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Benghazi 68, Us 50, U.s. 34, Libya 26, America 20, Clinton 17, Washington 17, United States 17, Afghanistan 16, Syria 12, Algeria 10, Kentucky 9, The F.b.i. 9, Iraq 9, Madam 8, California 8, Tunisia 8, Cairo 8, Chris Stevens 7, Stevens 6,
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  CSPAN    Public Affairs    News  News/Business.  

    January 23, 2013
    1:00 - 5:00pm EST  

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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the ayes are 151. the nays are 277. the motion is not adopted. the question is on the passage of the bill. those in favor will say aye.
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those opposed will say no. the ayes have it. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania rise? mr. brady: i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: a recorded vote is requested. those favoring a recorded vote will rise. a sufficient number having arisen, a recorded vote is ordered. members will record their votes by electronic device. a five-minute vote. [captioning made possible by the national captioning institute, inc., in cooperation with the united states house of representatives. any use of the closed-captioned coverage of the house proceedings for political or commercial purposes is expressly prohibited by the u.s. house of representatives.]
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are --
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the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 284 and -- the speaker pro tempore: on this vote the yeas are 285 and
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the nays are 144. without objection, the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the house will come to order. the house will come to order. for what purpose does the gentleman from california rise? >> madam speaker, by direction of the democratic caucus, i offer a privileged resolution and ask for its immediate consideration. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 42. resolved, that the following named members be and are hereby
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elected to the following standing committees -- the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the reading is suspended. without objection, the resolution is agreed to and the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from georgia rise? the house will be in order. please take your conversations off the floor. the house will be in order. please take your conversations off the floor.
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the house will be in order. please take your conversations off the floor. the gentleman from georgia is recognized. >> thank you, madam speaker. i ask unanimous consent that when the house adjourns today it adjourn to meet at 2:00 p.m. on friday, january 25, 2013, and when the house adjourns on that day it adjourn to meet at 1:00 p.m. on tuesday, january 29, 2013. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the chair now announces the
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speaker's appoint pursuant to sections 5580 and 5581 of the revised statute, 20, u.s.c., and the order of the house of january 3, 2013, of the following members on the part of the house to the board of renalents of the smithsonian institution. the clerk: mr. johnson of texas, mr. cole of oklahoma. the speaker pro tempore: the chair announces the speaker's appointment pursuant to section 5582 and the order of the house of january 3, 2013, of the following individuals to serve as the governing board of the office of congressional ethics. the clerk: nominated by the speaker with the concurrence of the minority leader -- mr. porter j. goss, mr. egan, ms.
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hayward, mr. friendswood. nominated by the minority leader with the concurrence of the speaker -- mr. david scaggs of colorado, co-chairman. mrs. yvonne burke of california. ms. karen english of arizona. mr. mike barnes of maryland,ality -- alternate. the speaker pro tempore: the house will be in order. please take your conversations off the floor. the house -- the chair will now entertain requests for one-minutes. please take your conversations off the floor. for what purpose does the
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gentleman from pennsylvania rise? mr. thompson: i request unanimous consent to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. thompson: madam speaker, the house is not in order. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania deserves to be heard. please take your conversations off the floor. the house will be in order. mr. thompson: thank you, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for one minute. mr. thompson: friday marks the annual march for life and i look forward to joining the thousands of constituents that will journey to washington to be the voice of the unborn and champions for their protection. without abortion, we can only know what occurs, innovation and discoveries we will have today from those aborted babies that did not grow up to fulfill the purpose that god had for them. our country is founded on the principles of jew dayo
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christian ethics, including dignity of human life and life -- judeo-christian ethics, including dignity of human life and life. all other morals are meaningless, if we do not follow them. abortion is contrary to one of the basic foundations in this country nation of equal rights for all and special exemption for none. abortion is contrary to the belief held by most americans that it is right and moral to help those who are needy and vulnerable, the innocent unborn are among the most vulnerable. thank you to the hundreds of thousands that will be in washington friday to march for the country's most vulnerable, the unborn, and i yield back. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new mexico rise? miss grisham: i rise in support of the paycheck fairness act which is being introduced today
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by long-time champion congresswoman rosa delauro. i'm proud to join her and my colleagues in supporting this critical legislation which now protects women in the work force by strengthening the equal pay act, banning retaliation against workers who discuss their wages, helping employees challenge unequal pay, and making available revenues for discriminatory practices. we all know that women make 77 cents for every dollar earned by men. the numbers' been repeated often, nuclear weapons this house which has passed paycheck fairness twice to correct this injustice. and in this tough economy now more than ever before women are the last line of economic defense for themselves and their children, working to keep a roof over their family's head and food on the table. that is why we need the paycheck fairness act without delay. it is time for the congress to act and give women a fighting chance to receive fair pay for their hard work. it's time to get this legislation to the president's desk.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman yields back her time. the house will be in order. please take conversations outside of the chambers. for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana rise? >> unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to recognize national school choice week, which has grown from 200 organizations and 150 events in 2011, to 500 organizations in more than 3,500 events this year. national school choice week highlights the benefits of school choice and the need to provide meaningful school options to students and families across this country. the school choice movement is based on one essential truth, that when parents have a choice, kids have an opportunity. mr. messer: school choice programs empower parents so he
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they can send their kids to schools that best meet their needs. as a former president of school choice indiana, i'm proud of the more than 10,000 hoosier children who have better opportunities today because of indiana's school choice programs. those programs work and i will work for their continued expansion as a member of the committee on education and the work force. mr. speaker, school choice is an idea that transcends ideology and party affiliation, providing opportunities that every child deserves. thank you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas seek recognition? mr. poe: i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman given one minute. mr. poe: mr. speaker, there is good news about energy. we have untapped natural resources here at home. in the united states we have natural gas that can be turned into liquefies natural gas. other nations don't have this. we have so much natural gas that
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we can export it by selling it as l.n.g. not only will it bring money and energy back home, it will create jobs. this means jobs and capital for americans and american companies. even the department of energy says that expanded export of l.n.g. will benefit the united states' economy. in 2010, the oil and natural gas industry added $476 billion to our economy. to top it off, the oil and natural gas industry employs 9.2 million people in america. we are missing out on this opportunity by not exporting l.n.g. we have ignored this opportunity far too long. let's stop relying on middle eastern nations and use more natural gas and export it as l.n.g. that's just the way it is. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. for what purpose does the gentleman from indiana seek recognition? >> to address the house for one minute. revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is
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recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. growing up back home on the farm in indiana we all knew that if you don't work, you don't eat. unfortunately that doesn't hold true if you are the majority leader in the united states senate. it's been four years since senate majority leader harry reid has brought a budget to the floor of the united states senate. you can build a pentagon three times in that time frame. it's time that -- to pass a budget out of the united states senate and senator reid should not be paid until it's done. the house has acted responsibly. we have met our deadlines, we have set our priorities, i was part of the house budget committee when we put together budgets that try to get our out-of-control spending under control and rein in our $16 trillion in debt. the sfat has not acted one time in that time frame. it's time to make the hard choices and do the work necessary to restore fiscal responsibility to washington. it's time for senator reid to pass a budget or withhold his
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paycheck. thank you, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. we'll have order in the chamber, please. for what purpose does the gentleman from minnesota seek recognition? >> i ask unanimous consent to address the house for one minute, revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the gentleman is recognized for one minute. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to recognize the eden prairie police department as they celebrate their 40th anniversary this year. since the creation of the public safety department in december of 1972, eden prairie community has been safer and stronger because of the wonderful work of its police officers. a police department that started with only five officers, a secretary, and two patrol cars has grown to be a thriving pillar of our community, employing more than 60 officers today. every day i am amazed by the hard work of police departments and officers across minnesota, but i am particularly and especially proud of my hometown's eden prairie police
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department. i would like to congratulate them and all the officers on an impressive 40 years serving our opportunity. mr. paulsen: every police officer past and present, thank you for your service and thank you for providing for our continued safety. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: are there further requests for one minute speeches? under the speaker's announced policy of january 5, 2011, -- under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the gentleman from kentucky, mr. barr, is recognized for 60 minutes as the designee of the minority leader. mr. barr: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend my remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. barr: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, when i graduated from henry clay high school in lexington, kentucky, just over 20 years ago, i had little notion that i would stand before you today occupying the seat which the great compromiser himself once held.
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henry clay was first elected to this house in 1811. becoming the only person elected as speaker the same day he took office. during his remarkable four decades on the national stage, he steered america through a daunting array of crises, each of which might have shattered the uneon absent his remarkable leadership. indeed, henry clay demonstrated that an unwavering dedication to principle and a practical commitment to compromise are not incompatible values. they are, instead, the tools of statesmanship. the implements of progress. and the guardians of freedom. he was abraham lincoln's bold ideal of a great man. yule guising clay in 1852, lincoln called him, quote, the man for a crisis, unquote.
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declaring that clay, quote, desired the prosperity of his countrymen partly because they were his countrymen but chiefly to show the world that freemen could be prosperous, unquote. henry clay understood the indispensable link between liberty, prosperity, and basic human dignity. his struggle to harness our system of checks and balances to serve these goals echos across the generations. the process was messy, and the path ahead was fraught with danger and uncertainty. but the great compromiser governed in the national interest without compromising himself or forgetting who sent him there. mr. speaker, i am honored, indeed i am awed by the legacy of henry clay and the exceptional men who followed him. but i did not come here as a
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self-styled heir to that legacy. instead i came here as a father, concerned about his children's future. i came here as a kentuckian, determined to fight for my state's signature industries. and i came here as an american committed to restoring the american dream. my district in central and eastern kentucky offers a panoramic view of the values, dreams, and passions that have animated our nation since its beginnings. historically anchored in kentucky's bluegrass region, the th district now extends to the apple latchian foothills, bordering the coal fields of the cumberland plateau. we are perhaps most recognized as the horse capital of the world. indeed, the world came to kentucky just over two years ago when lexington hosted the all-tech s.e.i. world equestrian
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games. yet that event offers just the latest example of our state's deep integration into the global economy. georgetown kentucky is home to the largest toyota manufacturing facility outside of japan. a facility which provides 7,000 well-paying jobs that produces the camry, the most popular american made car in the united states. these jobs in turn rely upon some of the lowest electricity costs in the nation, which kentucky's coal industry makes possible. having endured the astonishing assault of the war on coal during the last four years, kentucky's coal industry continues to offer the reality of affordable energy today. and the promise of an affordable, reliable, and clean source of american energy for centuries to come. kentuckians are also
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capitalizing upon our state's enormous potential for tourism, through creative initiatives like the bourbon trail, which now draws an estimated 400,000 visitors every year, we are introducing the world to our special heritage. the sixth district offers a number of historic treasures, such as daniel boone settlement, fort boonesboro, and frankfurt, even our new state capital and mansion are listed on the national register of historic places. plus, tourists and residents alike can enjoy natural attractions of stunning majesty such as red river gorge, natural bridge, and cave run which provide almost limitless opportunities for outdoor recreation. the sixth district also remains home to a diverse and thriving acking a urel economy. -- agricultural economy. we are best known for tobacco, but many people may not know that kentucky possesses more head of cattle than any state
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east of the mississippi. these industries are supported with colleges and universities filled without standing, steaching, and research professionals. institutions like the university of kentucky, my alma mater, eastern kentucky university, transle vaina university, kentucky state university, georgetown college, midway college, and the members of our community and technical college system. the university of kentucky is well-known for its proud tradition of college basketball, having won eight national championships. most recently in 2012. underlying all of these success stories is the unique pride and attachment to place that distinguishes connecticutians -- kentuckians wherever you find us. our state's pioneer heritage survives as the wellspring of our determination to survive and excel against overwhelming odds. no matter the challenge, we will persevere. we will lead.
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and with god's help, we will prosper together. mr. speaker, i am humbled beyond measure to represent a people who embody the spirit, the generosity, and the creativity that define america's greatness. i pray that my service proves equal to their trust. through the lens of time, henry clay appears larger than life, yet our republic has a habit of producing the right men and women at the right time. together let's strive after henry clay's model of leadership, given the graphity -- gravity of our challenges, each of us must. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the gentleman from virginia, mr. wolf, is recognized for the remainder of the hour.
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without objection. mr. wolf: i ask unanimous consent to revise and extend. more than four months have passed since the terrorist attack in benghazi which killed four americans including our ambassador, injured many others, and destroyed two u.s. facilities, yet despite the month has passed, we are hardly closer to bringing those responsible for justice than we were the weeks immediately following the attack. put bluntly, the lack of progress in identifying and hunting down the terrorists responsible is stunning. . consider the current state of the obama administration's response to the attack. four months later, the administration still cannot or will not name the terrorist groups responsible for the attacks or the names of these group leaders. four months later, despite constant video footage that many members of congress have seen and many eyewitnesses, not
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a single benghazi terrorist suspect is in custody. four months later, the unfinished business has had access to only one suspect, ali, for just three hours and the tunisian government kept the f.b.i. team waiting for more than five weeks -- five weeks when they were finally granted access. four months later, the administration still has not discussed the serious between the groups behind the benghazi attack and the leaders of the attack on the u.s. embassies in cairo, tunis the same week of september 11. four months later, following the pickering report on state department failures leading up to the attack, not a single state department employee has been fired and held responsible for their role in denying adequate security for the consulate in benghazi. four months later, despite secretary clinton's september 21 declaration, quote, which said, what happened was a terrorist attack, we will not
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rest until we have tracked down and brought to justice the terrorists who murdered four americans, end of quote. this administration seems to have not only rested but to have moved on, and apparently hopes that the congress and the american people will too. and today, just today, "the new york times" is reporting, quote, several ejips members of a squad of militant that -- also took part in the deadly attack on the united states mission in libya in september, end of quote. mr. speaker, four months later this is an unacceptable, unacceptable state of affairs. quite frankly, the obama administration has failed. they have failed to prioritize this investigation. they have failed to bring the necessary pressure to bail -- to bear on the libyans, tunisian and the egyptian governments. but more fundamentally, the
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administration has failed to respond to a terrorist attack appropriately, treated as a law enforcement and diplomatic issue rather than it is the security issue that it is. at its core, this is yet another reflection of president obama's schizophrenic counterterrorism policy. the same administration that unapologetically reins down drone attacks on al qaeda affiliates in pakistan, yemen, will not use other counterterrorism resources to identify, locate and detain the terrorists involved in the death of our ambassador and others in libya. this inconsistent policy may stem from the president's hasty campaign promise to shut down guantanamo bay, gitmo, prematurely transfer detention facilities in iraq and afghanistan. in doing so the president effectively ended america's ability to detain and interrogate terrorists, depriving the f.b.i., the
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c.i.a. and other agencies of critical opportunities to obtain information on al qaeda networks. today, as the case of benghazi suspect harzi, has demonstrated, the united states is completely reliant on the cooperation of host countries to detain on our behalf and selectively allow access to suspects. as in the case of harzi, as demonstrated, this approach is fraught with diplomatic roadblocks, costing critical time and getting information from suspects to track terrorist networks. perhaps that is why president obama so often opts to use lethal drone strikes to kill terrorists, knowing that the u.s. would be unable to get access to interrogate these terror suspects by working through host governments or because he no longer -- he no longer has a way to detain them in u.s. custody short of providing them the full privileges of an article 3 court.
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in short, the president has tied his own hands, compromised u.s. national security, put the f.b.i. in an impossible situation. the f.b.i. is now in an impossible position. the f.b.i. has been asked to treat the terrorist attacks where four americans died as a law enforcement activity and they have been put in a compromised and very difficult spot and they've laid the groundwork for the administration's inept response in the wake of the terrorist attack in benghazi. to make matters worse, the administration does not even see any significant success from its diplomatic focused response. when tunisia refused to let the f.b.i. access to harzi for more than five weeks, the administration took no public steps to use diplomatic tools like u.s. foreign assistance, pressure the tunisian government to make him available. in fact, the f.b.i. only gained access after members of
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congress threatened amendments to cut off foreign aid if they continued to obstruct the f.b.i. investigation. i was among those members of congress, along with lindsey graham and senator mccain and others. in the interim, i urged the administration to act immediately to suspend foreign assistance if the tunisian government permitted in obstructing the investigation. on january 4, i received a tepid response from the acting deputy, assistant administrator for public affairs at usaid, which i submit for the record, it was a bland assurance that the tunisian government was cooperating. was cooperating? five weeks and the f.b.i. had to wait? then the f.b.i. three hours to talk to him? and we gave this government $325 million last year. today i wrote usaid expressing my disappointment that the
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administrator himself could not respond directly to a member of congress who serves on a committee of jurisdiction and further pointed out what should be obvious, the tunisian government did not cooperate. the tunisian government never sought the aid, u.s. taxpayer money was in jeopardy. they have not faced a single consequence for undermining u.s. national security. i submit the letter for the record. sadly, the failure to respond forcibly and appropriately to the benghazi attack will undoubtedly encourage our enemy and make the world a more dangerous place for americans working in hostile environments around the world. this failure to respond has endangered future embassy staffs and ambassadors, the federal employees who serve our country at great risk. rather than demonstrating that there will be noress pet, no safe haven for a terrorist -- no respite, no safe haven for a
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terrorist, there is no apparent consequence for these actions, this will only embolden our enemy to plan the next benghazi, knowing that under this administration there is less consequence even for their involvement in such an attack. in this context, perhaps it is not surprising that the al qaeda affiliate, terrorist group, brazenly took pictures, took pictures of the f.b.i. agents interviewing harzi and posted pictures on their website. when the tunisian government released him, they were there to welcome him and posted a video of their celebration of his release. again, these antagonistic actions have been met by silence, silence from this administration. as steve haste and tom joshlin reported in "the weekly standard," the release of the photos was a clear attempt to intimidate the americans and make sure that the f.b.i. could
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not act with impunity. they warned the tunisian government that they allowed the f.b.i. to begin investigating your sons under postrevolutionary protection, end of quote. considering the same week of the benghazi attack, our embassies in cairo, tune is was overrun in a coordinated plot. in each case, the american flag was ripped down and burnt in a -- and a black al qaeda flag was flown in its place. we're fortunate and blessed that none of these resulted in the loss of life. they were nonetheless an attack on america by a hostile group. as the administration's own state department website states, quote, any attack on an embassy is an attack on the country it represents. every embassy and consulate that was overrun on september 11 is a public attack on america. in the months that have followed, this administration demonstrated that there are no
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consequences for breaching our embassy or killing our personnel. i fear that the latest hostage taking and killing of americans and other westerners in algeria is a manifestation of a new found confidence by our enemy. knowing they may face no serious consequence from this administration for their murderous acts. it is chilling that neither president obama nor any others in his administration have made a public statement on the recent terrorist activities in algeria whereby the head of france have spoken over and over. all the while, the arab spring has become an arab winter, and for many the people in the middle east and north africa in this arab winter a new safe haven for al qaeda affiliated groups are forming. ideologically fueled by the release of terrorists and extremists from prison and
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flush with prisons by anti-gaddafi rebels last year. we're witnessing the potential formation of the next front of the war on terror, but we increasingly have an administration that no longer considers it a war worth fighting no matter the cost to american power or the safety of our people abroad. while some have described the obama doctrine as leading from behind, it is increasingly clear that the obama doctrine means not leading at all. while most of the responsibility falls on the president and his administration, the congress, the house and the senate and media share some blame for failing to adequately investigate and bring attention to the many questions surrounding the administration's response to benghazi. aside from the handful of reporters who have stayed with this story and continued to raise questions about the administration's words and deeds, i can't help but wonder, where are "the new york times," "the washington post" or the network news programs? why in the wake of last week's
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deadly attack in algeria are no reporters investigating the serious links between al qaeda and the affiliates in north africa and the connection between the groups? equally important, why haven't they investigated both the circumstance of the attack and administration response over the last four months? despite a handful of hearings, many in classified settings done by very capable and good people, the american people have not been provided with anything close to an adequate answer to the following questions and it is not only important for the congress to find out, it is important for the american people to find out. have they've been given answers to these questions? secretary panetta, attorney general holder still have not testified publicly before congress what steps they take, did they take during the attack and in the days that followed. what were the president's activity during his seven-hour period of attack? why wasn't u.s. military
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deployed to assist? when the anniversary of the worst terrorist attack in america's history and after multiple attacks on u.s. and western interests, why were u.s. military units and assets in the region not ready, alert and in position to respond? after all, two of the four people killed were murdered seven hours, seven hours after the fighting began. why do we still not have the clear answers on the internal process that produced the inaccurate and frankly misleading talking points on what ambassador rice relied so much in the days? why were the u.s. personnel evacuated in ban ghazi september 12? those that -- why were they not immediately factored into the judgment of our intelligence community? had the witnesses there on the scene, government employees, good people all risking their lives, had they been given an
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opportunity to talk to members on both sides of the aisle and the answer is no. why hasn't secretary clinton been talked to by the pickering commission? to date, the congress has failed to get these answers and have not developed a coordinated or substantial investigative plan to fully explore this critical matter which has a direct bearing on u.s. national security. in the absence of serious oversight, the media has moved on. in the absence of this and the administration which has known so much to account for to the american people, received the cart blanche from the legislative branch to continue the questionable policies. these matters are too serious to be brushed aside. there are critical legislative decisions the next congress will have to make based on these answers. but more importantly, the american people deserve the answers to these questions, including open hearings and a
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classified report. mr. speaker, for these reasons i remain convinced that the house select committee on the benghazi attack is needed more than ever. that is why last week i introduced my resolution, h.res. 36, with 20 of our colleagues joining as you original co-sponsors. a select committee is essential to combine the myriad existing investigations into a single comprehensive and exhaustive review. i believe such combined effort will yield even more information regarding the true nature of these terrorist attacks and administration response will not allow administration officials to offer up siloed accounts to various committees. the select committee should draw from the existing congressional investigation including the chairman and ranking member of each committee of jurisdiction -- the intelligence committee and mr. rogers and mr. ruppersberger have done a great job. the foreign a affairs committee and mr. royce -- affairs committee and mr. royce and mr. english does a good job.
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the armed services committee, the homeland security committee. the oversight and government reform committee as well as five additional republican members appointed by the speaker and two additional democrats appointed by the minority leader, so it's truly bipartisan. . i appreciate the support. the heritage foundation, former senator from tennessee, fred thompson, who was a counsel on the watergate select committee, former ambassador, job bolton, and a former special operations officer, and c.i.a. operative who is widely respected in the intelligence community. mr. speaker, and members of this body, we owe it to the families of the victims and the american peoplele to fully investigate this terrorist attack. i urge my colleagues to support my resolution to create a house select committee and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back.
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the speaker pro tempore: under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the chair recognizes the gentleman from texas, mr. gohmert, for 30 minutes. mr. gohmert: thank you, mr. speaker. briefly we had a vote today. there's some wonderfully members of congress i have deep respect for who voted yes and 32 republicans who voted no on the republican side. it's not because we don't all hold the same belief that we have to cut spending to be responsible, to aavoid continuing to -- to avoid continuing to add debt to our children and grandchildren, but a matter of difference in strategy.
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others mistake suspend the debt ceiling increase. just as it would be to raise the debt ceiling without any meaningful cuts, just as senator phil graham got back in 1985 i believe it was, with graham-rudman -- graham rudman and so many of the debt increases that accompanied that was part of the deal with restrictions on spending. there are so many things going on in the world today that are just staggering. we know we have secretary of state, hillary clinton, testifying today. one report here today says that secretary clinton quickly interrupted one senator that contradict him and stress that
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she did not see request for additional security to protect the benghazi mission. extremely unfortunate. that people in our state department committed to helping to this country would make cries for help over a period of months, over a period of years, even going back to when ambassador rice was with the state department, and people were killed an american embassy request had been made for extra security that went unheeded. here it came again and apparently there were a number of people that made requests, including one of the security officials that i met and talked to personally, they could see that we were sitting ducks.
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and apparently senator -- former senator clinton now secretary clinton is saying she never saw the request, the buck would have stopped with her if they ever made it to her. what it says is, something has got to be done so that when people who have dedicated their lives to helping and protecting this country cry for help, that months, years after the cries we don't again come back and say, never heard the cries, never got to me. tragic, tragic. senator now secretary clinton said that the administration's
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response to the assault was to be defended and that independent investigation found that the state's actions saved american lives in real time. well, from what i have seen from the house side, in the news that without going into anything that might be classified just from the public information we have disconcerned -- we have discerned, the actions of the state department -- discerned, the actions of the state department in failing and ignoring the request for help did not save lives. it ended up costing lives. the failure of this president to either receive information when a united states ambassador he put in harm's way was begging,
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was under fire and people were begging for help on his behalf, we've got people indicate, gee, but immediately gets to the president himself or someone directly around the president who can get the president's immediate attention. we have an ambassador under attack, that goes straight to the president or somebody right around him. and just like secretary clinton apparently has testified today, i never saw her, the cries for help, i didn't know. well, since this president is going to be in office for four more years as of monday, it is imperative that he clean house and set up new procedures so that even if he's out golfing, even if he is on vacation, body
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surfing in hawaii, wherever he is, doing fundraising in las vegas, no matter where he is that somebody says, mr. president, people that you put in harm's way are begging for help, they are under attack. they are begging for your help, and i feel sure -- he would take time off of one of the greens or body surfing. he would surely take time -- i know he would. if somebody would get him the information. your ambassador is about to be killed. i know he would walk off the green and give some order to protect him. surely. but he's got to get the information. i travel around the world meeting with our military, special forces, different branches of our military,
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afghanistan to very far reaches in the southern part of the philippines, wherever, iraq, won't be going back to iraq, prime minister maliki didn't like dana rohrabacher and i questioning him about repaying some of the u.s. money that we spent to give him the opportunity to be elected, especially since they now have all that oil revenue, and he also didn't like us bringing up the fact that they promised the united states when they took over, the government, that they would protect the people, the refugees from iran, and that actually the military had gone in and killed some of those people that he and the u.s. had pledged would be safe. and he didn't like that. and apparently sent word that we
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were not welcomed in this country anymore. we are ok with americans dying so i can get elected here in iraq, but we don't want anybody making us keep our promises here in iraq. i have seen our military in the kurdish areas of northern iraq, all around the world, i was in only for four years, and one thing that they are very concerned about that they can't talk about publicly, but especially after we had two former seals killed trying to protect the ambassador when it wasn't there job to do that, they did it because they are american heroes, american patriots, but our military sees those things. when i was in the military, president carter was president. we knew, we had a president who did not have our back.
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who was more concerned about other things than the military. and there was a lot of unrest, pu it's a crime in the united states military to say anything der roguetory about anyone in your chain of command, including the top person, the president. and it needs to be that way. when you are in the military you take orders. and you follow your orders. and you don't castigate who is up your chain of command even if they don't have a clue what they are doing. it has to be for the good order, discipline of the military. but we were not stupid. we knew when the president was not protecting us, was not protecting americans. we knew when the president was not providing the equipment and work we needed to protect americans. we knew that. and as i go around the world and talk to different of our military, they notice that we have officials in this administration who after
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americans dedicated to protecting this country are killed, will come forward from the white house down and say, gee, i had no idea that they were in that kind of trouble. i had no idea that our policies subjected them to being killed. i had no idea, i wish somebody had let me know they were in this kind of trouble. the military he knows that. -- the military knows that. and as i mentioned, one soldier in afghanistan said, please let others in washington know i don't mind laying down my life for my country, but please don't waste it. that's not much of an ask for those who have committed to protecting the rest of us. yet this administration still prevents us from getting to the real facts, the real truth.
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to have someone come forward and say, i really didn't know there was trouble. i didn't know about the request for help. that does not answer the question that this body is demanding answers to, and that is, who did know? who made the decisions not to protect americans in harm's way? who made that call? who was it that gave orders because surely there was somebody out there who said an american ambassador is under attack. we are going to go protect him. to attack a consulate is an act of war under anybody's interpretation of international law. it's an act of war. and when somebody commits an act of war against the united states, gens a u.s. ambassador, against our people -- against a
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u.s. ambassador, against our people, they need to know there is a commander in chief, or if he doesn't know because he's busy, somebody that will give the order to protect those that were put in that bad situation. our military needs to know that their commander cares. our military needs to know that they are not going to lay down their life for nothing. . this is not the kind of testimony we need. we want the truth. if this is the truth so be it. of course we heard from the doctors after the fall that, gee, it turns out this could be the kind of thing that would result in memory loss. and i'm glad she's well enough to get along. my late mother with a brain tumor had balance problems. we constantly had to be on
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alert for her falling, maybe tripping over a curb and hurting herself. breaks your heart when you see somebody bruised from falling. so i'm glad secretary clinton's ok. but we have an ambassador and other americans who died. so instead of sending witnesses to say, i don't know what happened, i'll take the blame. i have no clue what happened. but i'm responsible. instead of that, please, mr. speaker, we need to be provided with testimony and evidence how did these irresponsible decisions get made and who made them. because as i say, our military gets it. they see what's going on despite some that might say, yeah, if you don't finish high school or don't get an education, you may end up in the military.
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if you actually spend enough time with the military instead of being a 90-day wanderer and get a purple heart and be on your way, if you spend substantial time with true military heroes that are deindicated protecting our -- dedicated protecting our way of life, you see they're smart people. you spend time with seals, as i have, and you know they are not only incredibly trained people, they're smart people. you spend time with special forces as i have -- there at fort bening where i spent four years, that's where the rangers are trained. they're smart people, and they're smart enough to know when people in their chain of command do not have their back, do not take actions that make it appear they care, i know the president cares.
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i know he does. i know secretary clinton cares. but it's not enough to say, i had no idea that i put people in harm's way and that they were begging for help and i got them killed. you know, let's find out where the problem is. how come they didn't know that what was going on and the failure to proside security was going to get them killed? why didn't they know? those are the kinds of things we need to find out. we find out there are americans killed in an attack in algeria. how could it be that these people in algeria had the weapons to carry out this attack? well, some of the reports indicate that these weapons probably came from libya. well, where were the libyans got weapons? -- where did the libyans got
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weapons? could it be that they were weapons made for americans? could it be we started claiming we got to go after entirely the -- with our full force of the law anybody that sells guns to criminals, it's a shame they didn't start with the department of justice, but i guess if you're the department of justice then you're responsible for enforcing the sale of guns for criminals, then you're not exactly interested in looking at whooks -- whose actions in your department caused the deaths of hundreds of americans and at least one or two -- hundreds of mexicans and one or two americans. but it needs to be looked at. that's how you avoid mistakes in the future.
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you find out what caused the mistakes. the three americans were among 38 workers killed in the siege of an algerian gas plant in which islamic terrorists used hostages as human shields after their attempted mass kidnapping for ransom went awry. some algerian attackers have been playsed at benghazi. in "the new york times" dated january 22, by adam, several egyptian members of the squad of militants that lay bloody siege to an algerian gas complex last week also took part in the deadly attack on a united states mission in libya in september as senior algerian
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officials said tuesday. months and months after a u.s. ambassador is killed, we finally have our f.b.i. director go over to check into it himself. after f.b.i. agents went and did some checking, they had reporters go over there and find actual evidence that somehow the f.b.i. missed or did not bother with. mistakes that get the united states public servants, committed their lives to the u.s., get them killed requires scrutiny, and this administration, since they will have four more years, will hopefully be concerned enough about not getting other members
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of their state department, their embassies, their consulates, their soldiers killed for nothing. now, i know the soldiers. i've been to far too many funerals, and having known so many in harm's way, even if they're sent to the valley of death, riding with the 600, figuratively speaking, they know they didn't die for nothing. they died devoted to the belief in the things that are set out in the declaration of independence, that we are endowed by our creator with certain unalienable rights. and just like any inheritance,
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if you're going to keep it, you're probably going to have to fight for it. and again our military begs, i'm going to lay down for life for my country, don't waste it. so, mr. speaker, i hope and pray this administration will stop confiscating or stop the hiding of documents, preventing us from getting them so we can find what mistakes were made so we can prevent them in the future. and the great news for this administration, mr. speaker, is that, gee, he doesn't have to run for re-election again, so there's no excuse whatsoever for not bringing the facts forward. may i inquire how much time i have? the speaker pro tempore: about nine minutes. mr. gohmert: so since the president doesn't have to run
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for re-election, there is no reason not to bring out the facts of fast and furious, what happened in benghazi that has now spilled over and cost american lives in algeria. let's get to the bottom of it, and if secretary clinton does not know what happened, if she doesn't have a clue, bless her heart, let's get somebody that does. let's find out how these mistakes were made so we can prevent future lives being lost when they don't have to be. mr. speaker, i want to conclude today, since this week marks the 40th anniversary of the landmark case of roe v. wade, those of us who have been involved as a lawyer trying cases, civil cases such as roe v. wade was a civil case, those
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of us that have been involved as a judge as i was also a chief justice, we know that in order for a case to be right, that it can be heard in court, there must be a judiciable issue, such as in roe v. wade, but the person bringing the case has standing to bring the case, took years but we ultimately find out that at the time there was no standing. we find out from the person who was roe, fictitious name, she deeply regrets what had happened and that case has been responsible for the killing of millions of lives. and i have so many dear friends
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on the democratic side of the aisle, i know their hearts. they don't want people to get killed. they care about life. and so many on both sides of the aisle talk about trying to protect, quote, the most vulnerable among us, unquote. i would humbly submit there is no one more vulnerable than an unborn child. there is that chord through which nourishment -- cord through which nourishment and oxygen flow as that baby grows and develops. there is a desire in the human heart to live. there is a desire to live, and
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those precious, innocent children want to live. it's who they are. it's part of their genetic makeup to want to live. there's no baby born or unborn who is capable, mentally or physically of taking their own lives intentionally. can't happen. it doesn't happen. they want to live. so our heart breaks as a nation thinking about the spilled blood of innocent, vulnerable children, all put to death because someone did not understand what was going on. and they were led to believe it's not life, it's a choice.
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the children want to live. when our first born was born, she came eight to 10 weeks prematurely, and back then it was -- it was uncertain whether she was going to live. we were encouraged at first but the doctors said she's in trouble. her lungs are not developed. and i knew from cases that i've been involved in that if too much oxygen is given to a preemie there is a chance they'll go blind. so doctors avoided that if at all possible. i saw them go from 20 to 40 to 60% to 80% to 100% oxygen. when they got to 100%, i knew katie was in big trouble. they wouldn't risk her blindness. and they said, we needed to
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ship her to either dallas or houston -- or shreveport where -- to get the top-rated neo natal i.c.u. shreveport was a little closer. i was torn. my wife was suffering having given birth prema turrill, stay with her or go with the -- prematurely, stay with her or go with the baby. she said, go with katie. do whatever you can to help her. so i followed the ambulance to sh is reef port. the doctor cared so deeply for those babies. i understand why they have the best survival rate there in shreveport. he had the policy, if you went by a child, you had to observe proper sanitizeation
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procedures. you touch those children, you talk to those children. they hear you. they know you. when i got there they sat me on a stool and said, you can stay no more than two hours but talk to this child. she knows your voice. she has heard your voice for maybe seven months. she knows your voice. talk to her. caress her arms. talk to her. caress her little face. and i did. . the monitors were going so fast, so erratic was the heart rate and breathing, lungs so undeveloped. and as i had been there for a couple hours dr. psing came back over, and katie had a grip on my finger. that tiny little hand of hers around the very end of my finger , and she wouldn't let go. and he came over after a while and he said, have you looked at
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the monitors? and i looked up, she still had such undeveloped lungs, but her breathing had stabilized. her heart rate had stabilized. and dr. psing said, she is drawing life. she is drawing strength from you. i couldn't leave. i sat there for eight hours before they forced me to take a break. but i learned born or unborn, a child wants to live. i hope and pray we will not
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continue to allow the killing of 40, 50, 60 million more precious babies like katie. katie's alive today. she's a joy. she's brilliant. there are other children that wanted to live as well. and we need to stop deceiving pregnant women that it's not a life. it is a life. and it's endowed by our creator. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. under the speaker's announced policy of january 3, 2013, the chair recognizes the gentleman from arizona, mr. franks, for 30 minutes.
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the gentleman is recognized. mr. franks: i thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i know that another legislative day has come to an end. and as sunset fast approaches in washington, d.c., and i stand before this house with what i call the sunset memorial. because you see, mr. speaker, before the sun sets today in america, almost 4,000 more defenseless unborn children will be killed by abortion on demand in the land of the free and the home of the brave. that's more than the number of
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innocent lives lost on september 11 in this country, and it happens every single day. mr. speaker, it has now been 40 years, an entire generation, since the tragedy called roe vs. wade was first handed down. since then the very foundation of this nation has been stained by the blood of almost 55 million of its own unborn children. some of them, mr. speaker, cried and screamed as they died. but because it was amniotic fluid going through the vocal cords instead of air we couldn't hear them. all of them had at least four things in common, mr. speaker. first they were just nameless little babies that had done wrong to no one. and yet each one of them died a nameless and lonely death.
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and each one of their mothers, whether she realizes it or not, will never be quite the same. and all the gifts that these children might have brought to humanity and this world are loss forever. even in the glare of such tragedy, this generation still clings to a blind, invincible ignorance. while history repeats itself over and over again, and our own silent genocide, mercilessly anigh late the most helpless of all victims, those yet unborn. mr. speaker, i recently heard barack obama speak such poignant words that whether he knows it or not, apply so profoundly to the tragedy of abortion on demand in america. let me quote selected, excerpted portions of his comments. he said, quote, this is our
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first task -- caring for our children. it's our first job. if we don't get that right, we don't get anything right. that's how as a society we will be judged. and by that measure can we truly say as a nation that we are meeting our obligations? can we honestly say we are doing enough to keep our children, all of them, safe from harm? he went on to quote, can we say that we are truly doing enough to give all the children of this country the chance that they deserve to live out their lives in happiness and with purpose. he said i have been reflecting on this the last few days, and if we are honest with ourselves, the answer is no. we are not doing enough. and we will have to change. oh, mr. speaker, how true the
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president's words were. the president also said, quote, we can't tolerate this any longer. these tragedies must end. and to end them we must change. when the president asked, quote, are we really prepared to say that we are powerless in the face of such carnage, that the politics are too hard? are we prepared to say that such violence visited on our children year after year after year is somehow the price of our freedom ? what a powerful question, mr. speaker. it is the most relevant question we should all be asking in the midst of this again sidal -- genocidal murder of thousands of unborn children in america every day. the president said, quote, our joush-u journey is not incomplete. our journey is not complete. until our children, all our children, are both cared for and
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cherished and always safe from harm. he said this, he said that is our generation's task to make these words, these rights, these values of life and liberty and the pursuit of happiness real for every american. mr. speaker, never have i so deeply agreed with any words ever spoken by president obama as those i have just quoted. and yet this president in the most merciless distortion of logic and reason and humanity itself refuses to apply these majestic words to the helpless unborn babies of this nation. how i wish that somehow mr. obama would just open his heart
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and ears to his own words and ask himself in the core of his soul why his words that should apply to all children, cannot include the most helpless of all children? only a few days ago no more than 200 yards from this well, barack obama put his hand down on the same bible that abraham lincoln was sworn in when he took his presidential oath. mr. speaker, we should remember that we are abraham lincoln most because he found the courage as president of the united states in the days of slavery and the humanity within himself to recognize the image of god stamped on the soul of slaves, that the supreme court said we are not human and that the tide of public opinion didn't recognize as he protectable under law. could it still be, could it still be, mr. speaker, that
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president barack obama might consider that perspective as well as his own legacy and even eternity itself, mr. speaker, and recognize that in his day under his presidency that these little unborn children look so desperately to him now for help. could it be that the president might finally remember that on the pages of the bible on which he laid his hand were the words written in read, inasmuch as you have done under the least of these my brethren, you have done it unto me. mr. speaker, whether he does or not, it is certainly time for those of us in this chamber to remind ourselves of why we are really all here.
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thomas jefferson said the care of human life and happiness are not its destruction. it is the chief and only object of good governs. the -- gotscheance. the phrase in the 14th amendment capsulizing our entire constitution. it says, no state shall deprive any person of life, liberty, or property without due process of law. mr. speaker, protecting the lives of all americans and their constitutional rights is why we are all here. the bedrock foundation of this republic is that clarion declaration of the self-evident truth that all human beings are created equal and endowed by their creator with unalienable rights, the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. every conflict and battle our nation has ever faced can be
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traced to our commitment to this core, self-evident truth. it has made us the beacon of hope for the entire world, mr. speaker. it is who we are. yet today, another day has passed. and in this body we have failed, again, to honor that foundational commitment. we have failed our sworn oath and our god-given responsibility as we broke faith with nearly 4,000 more innocent little american babies who died today without the protect we should have given them. so, mr. speaker, let me conclude this sunset memorial in the hopes that perhaps someone knew who heard it tonight. will finally embrace that very inconvenient truth that abortion really does kill little babies.
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and that it hurts mothers in ways that we can never imagine. and it is time we stood up together again and look to our declaration of independence and that we remember that we are the same america that rejected human slavery and marched into europe to arrest the nazi hall cost. -- holocaust, and we are still the nation that could find a better way for mothers and their unborn babies than abortion on nand. it is still not too late for to us make a better world and for america to be the one that leads the rest of the planet, just as we did in the days of slavery, from this tragic genocide of murdering nearly 4,000 of our own children every day. so now, mr. speaker, as we consider the plight of the unborn, after 40 years, under roe vs. wade, maybe we can
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remind ourselves that our own days in this sunshine of life are all numbered. and that all too soon each one of us will also walk from these chambers for the very last time. and it should be that this congress allowed to convenient on yet another day, may that be the day when we finally find the humanity, the courage, and the will to embrace together our human and our constitutional duty to protect these, the least of our tiny little brothers and sisters in america. from this murderous scourge upon our nation called abortion on demand. mr. speaker, it is now 40 years since roe vs. wade. first stained the foundation of this nation with the blood of its own children.
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this in the land of the free, and the home of the brave. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the chair would entertain a motion to adjourn. mr. franks: i move for adjournment. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman rise? mr. franks: i move we adjourn. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the motion to adjourn. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the house
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video library. go to c-span.org. her successor, massachusetts senator john kerry, will appear at a confirmation hearing tomorrow. that will be before the senate foreign relations committee. you can watch that at 15k a.m. network on c-span3. and later this month, chuck hagel has been tagged by president obama to be the next defense secretary. you can watch his confirmation hearing before the senate armed services committee. that will be january 31 at 9:31 a.m. eastern, and also on c-span3.
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>> what's the best training for a policeman? >> i said it before, i'll say it again, the best training you can get to become a really good police officer and understand what it's all about is walking a foot beat. i'll say that until the day i die. you learn how to develop sources. you learn how to use intelligence information. you learn how to leverage relationships in the community and that is the key. people in a community trust you. they'll tell you when there are things that are happening that are not yet crime so that you can intervene. they'll tell you how to go about doing it. i really learned the most of my career from those relationships. >> from high school dropout to single mother to the youngest police chief in washington, d.c., more with cathy lanier sunday night at 8:00 on c-span's "q&a." c-span, created by america's cable companies in 1979, brought to you as a public service by your television
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provider. john mccain and a number of others urged a shift in aid to the region to provide aid directly to the syrian opposition. this briefing follows the bipartisan delegation of senators who traveled to egypt, afghanistan, israel last week. this is about 40 minutes. >> good afternoon. i'm here with my colleagues, bipartisan group that just returned from a trip to the middle east. senator lindsey graham is with us. he remains in afghanistan doing his active duty as a colonel in the air force reserve. we hope that he's not held hostage for too -- some of us hope that he is. anyway.
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so i'm joined with senator whitehouse of rhode island, kelly out of new hampshire, senator koonce of delaware, and senator blumenthal of connecticut. and i'm pleased to be joined with my colleagues, both democrats and republicans. we traveled to egypt, afghanistan, jordan and israel. we met with a broad array of people and leaders in nearly all of these countries. and we also had an opportunity to engage directly on the matter of syria. meeting in egypt with the new president and visit the refugee camp in jordan. i want to give my colleagues an opportunity to speak with themselves and we all look forward to taking our questions on every aspect of our trip. but the main reason why we convened this press conference is to talk about syria because one main area of agreement
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among us, democrats and republicans, is the need for the united states to do more to help the syrian people and their struggle for freedom. from syrian opposition leaders and refugees, we heard a very consistent message. we heard that the longer this conflict goes, the worse it gets for syria, the region and indeed the world with increasing numbers of extremists falling into the fight. moderate becoming marginalized with the total possibility of total state failure, biological weapons can be used and people fleeing syria in greater numbers which threatens the stability of syria's neighbors. we heard desperate pleas for u.s. support and assistance. there was a desire for weapons and ammunition for a flfls and for our government -- no-fly zone and for our government to
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channel assistance not to national n.g.o.'s, as the country is doing, but through the opposition coalition, which would strengthen its legitimacy and capacity. but perhaps most alarmingly, we heard frustration and outright anger, especially from the refugees about the inadequate level of the u.s. support and assistance for their struggle against the assad regime. one syrian woman who was a member of the council at the camp we visited in jordan was a teacher. she was doing everything she could to educate the many children in the camp, but many of these syrian children had had not gone -- have now gone two years knowing little else but war and misery and homelessness. they've lost friends and family, and their ideal pray for radicals. and this woman warned us that these syrian children, in her words, would seek revenge on
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those who did not help syria in their hour of greatest need. the conflict has gone on now for two years. many americans assumed that by now assad would have left power and the violence would have ended. it has not. 60,000 people are dead and there is no end in sight. there is a dire need to restart the conversation in the congress and across the country about america's role and responsibility in helping the syrian people. i think all of us would agree that the center of this conversation is a clear realization that assad's indiscriminant and escalating use of airpower is one factor among all others that enables him to continue his onslaught against the soarian people. if we wish to be relevant to the conflict in syria, we must have a serious debate about how responsible nations can prevent assad from massacring his own people with fighter jets and helicopter gun ships and even
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scud missiles. just a word about egypt. we had a very spirited meeting with the president of egypt where we told him that the content of his speech a couple years before basically attacking israel and making comments which we view are unacceptable about israel, we were pleased that some hours after that meeting, the president of egypt issued a pretty good statement concerning those remarks. in afghanistan, we continue to be concerned about the plans for troop levels and what kind of force will be left behind to help the afghans consolidate the enormous efforts that they have made in obtaining some
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success over the taliban. they still have many challenges and an issue we continue to hear the prime minister and will most likely remain prime minister, serious concerns about iran's view about nuclear weapons. senator whitehouse. >> thank you for being here. first, i want to thank senator mccain for leading this congressional delegation trip. it was a hard working but very informative and useful trip. there are a number of issues that we engaged during this trip that we will continue to work on after the trip. the issue that brings us together today for this particular press conference is the situation in syria. i think many of us hoped that
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the assad regime would fall fairly rapidly and that there could be a more or less orderly transition to a new government. it appears that the situation in syria is getting increasingly dire, and it appears that the assad administration is -- has dug in pretty hard. and so there is a real danger of the warfare prolonging and while it prolongs having the syrian state devolve into a potentially, ethnically cleansed enclafes through the kurds -- enclaves through the kurds and so forth and
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jihadists to launch attacks from. so i think we are unanimous in our concern for that. i think we also agree in strong and bipartisan fashion that we need to do more in the way of recognition of the free syrian army, and we need to make sure that there is both adequate humanitarian relief getting into syria and that these opposition groups have a significant role in the distribution of that material for the reason senator mccain identified, for giving them authority and credibility as they fight for their freedom. on the jordanian border we visited a refugee camp where the night before nearly 2,000 syrian refugees had crossed the border in order to find refuge. since that camp was set up, the
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influx of refugees has been ahead of the capacity of the camp to deal with them. they're catching up. they're working hard. i don't want to criticize the u.n. high commission on refugees, but it's just coming very fast, and foreseeable situations could provoke very substantial increases in that flood of refugees that lead to true humanitarian crisis along that border. so in addition to agreeing that we need to do more in the way of recognition and humanitarian aid support through the syrian opposition, we also agree that we need to be front loading a more robust humanitarian effort in jordan and making sure that our very good friends in jordan have the resources that they need so that in a time of relative economic difficulty in jordan they are not being called on to put enormous
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amount of resources into solving this problem. it's everything from night goggles for the jordanian troops along that border because the refugees are coming over at night to loan guarantees and to coordinated international support to prepare for larger numbers of refugees as time goes on. so, again, i'm very pleased that we had the chance to make this trip. i thank and congratulate senator mccain, again, for leading the delegation and i'll turn it over now to -- >> the portion of the event that happened yesterday on the situation in syria. you can see it online in its entirety. go to our website, c-span.org. we are going live to capitol hill for secretary of state hillary clinton. she's testifying for the second time today on the attack of the u.s. consulate in benghazi. she is sitting before the house foreign affairs committee. we join it in progress.
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>> radio communication was necessary. and there were a few that were only partially implemented because of some separate security concerns that that would have raised. but there was a need for ongoing funding. you remember that admiral crow said we wanted $2.2 billion for building embassies. we had a number of embassies that were built in those early years thanks to your legislation. then it teetered off. we put so much time and attention into iraq and afghanistan, trying to make sure that we secured our people there. we sent a lot of our diplomatic security personnel there, and so we had a slowdown over a number of years in our ability to build new facilities and now the latest is let's get back and do this again because there's no substitute for it. >> i am almost out of time, madam secretary. when did you first hear of
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ambassador stevens' request and did he ask you to personally be involved? >> no. any of the requests, any of the cables having to due with security did not come to my attention. >> mr. sherman from california. . >> i with have thought that your last appearance would be a chance for us to review your outstanding record as one of our great secretaries of state, whether it be leading efforts to enforce sanctions on iran. your work supporting women'sritis around the world, en-- women's rights around the world, engaging in civil society and restoring and maintaining american influence in a very difficult era. and i would have thought that your last hearing would be your chance to give us some advice for what to do over the next
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conscious over the next four years and beyond. i take seriously your very strong advice because i happen to agree with it, that it's about time we pass an authorization bill through both houses of congress. but instead we're here at i guess our third hearing to deal with the tragic events in benghazi because it is a chance for each political party to beat up on the other. we can talk about how republicans didn't provide you with resources, we can talk about the administration inside the state department. so i would hope that maybe we'd get you to come back again. i realize that would be grats i, you wouldn't be on the government payroll at that time and do the hearing that i'd like to have. which is getting your input on the bigger issues of foreign policy. ultimately the security of our diplomats depend on the host
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country. this is all a discussion about well there might have been five security people on the ground if only there had been more funding, more deployment this cable, that cable, maybe there would have been eight or nine security people on the ground which might have led to more protection, might have led to more casualties. here in washington the decision was made to provide well more than 16 security people to libya and nobody that i know of in washington was involved in the issue of how many of those were in benghazi, either going with the ambassador or there in advance. so the decision that all 16 weren't with him was a decision that you can't blame either political party or anyone in washington for. ultimately all we can have at our embassies is enough to stave off a militant attack for a few
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hours and after that if the host country doesn't come to the rerescue, it doesn't matter whether we have three, six, 12, 16 or 36 armed guards and marines at the location. one aspect of protecting our diplomats in the future is bringing to justice the criminals who did this this time. we did a lot for the people of libya. we did a lot for those who are now ruling libya. how would you appraise their efforts to cooperate with us in the investigation and does this libyan government have the will and the capacity to arrest suspects involved and of course will in capacity tend to go with each other, i think they would have to at minimum strain their
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capacity to try to arrest powerful armed elementments in the eastern part of the country and i don't know if they have -- even if they have the will to use that capacity. so, can you tell us after the attack and now that we're trying to bring these culprits to justice, what do you think of the libyan government? >> well, i think, congressman, you drew exactly the right description. is it will or capacity when obviously what you need is both. i have found the libyan officials to be willing but without capacity. and part of our challenge is to help them build greater capacity because now it's about them. you know, it's not only about what happened to us in benghazi, which every official in the libyan government was deeply upset about, but they have their own problems now.
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they're having leaders attacked and assassinated on a regular basis. so we have to do more to help them build up their security capacity and again i would ask this committee to work with us. there are holds on a lot of the security funding that would go to libya to assist them in building capacity. there are those i know in the congress who say, look, libya's a wealthy nation. we don't need to give them any money. well, until they get up and going, it's in our great interest to give them the resources, like we have with other countries over the past 40 years. >> we can go to mr. rohrabacher of california. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. and thank you for being with us today. and putting yourself through this. >> thank you. >> let me just note that fixing responsibility, which is what we're trying to do today, and identifying bad policies and mistakes is the way that democracies fix problems. it is not all politics.
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it's how we do things here to make it better. so none of us have at all apologized for trying to get to the nitty gritty. let me just note that assistant secretary of state lamb testified here in congress that budget considerations played absolutely no role in her decision, it was her decision, not yours, but her decision as to what the level of security would be there at benghazi. any suggestion that this is a budget issue is offbase or political. madam secretary, you told the senate this morning that you learned of the attack around 4:00 p.m. on that day and you were involved widely in the coordinated response which included the department of defense and the white house but did not speak to the president until later that evening. when did you talk to the president?
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>> two things. on the first point you made, congressman, the a.r.b. disagreed with that and did find that budget issues were at stake. >> she testified under oath. >> that's why you have an independent group like an a.r.b. >> everybody has their own -- >> i think it's important though -- and i would urge -- >> when did you see the president? when did you see the president? >> i talked to the president at the end of the day but i had been in constant communication with the security advisor. i had been on video conversations with high levels. >> secretary lamb, the lady we're talking, testified that she had actually witnessed this in realtime. the attack. in realtime. on a monitor. at any time did you see the initial attack on a monitor? or the president? >> congressman, there was no monitor. there was no realtime. we got the surveillance videos
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some weeks later. that was the first time we saw any video of the attack. >> so -- >> i think there was a -- there was a misunderstanding. i think perhaps, i'm just trying to clarify this, i may be going beyond my brief here, but i think perhaps what she meant -- >> was there audio? >> she was talking to d.s. people who were trying to understand what was going on. >> i have to say that admiral mullen suggested that they had seen some kind of video and that within a few moments it was very clear that this was a very coordinated terrorist attack and not some demonstration -- >> i think the surveillance video which some of you may have seen in a classified setting does demonstrate what happened that night. >> as you were dealing with the crisis, as it went on, did you think or act on the basis that this was a film protest gone out of control and when you briefed the president did you tell him that?
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or did you tell him, which admiral mullen suggests you knew by then, that this was a well-planned and executed terrorist attack? which was the president told? >> well, first of all, i said the very next morning that it was an attack by heskly armed militants. the president said that morning it was an act of terror. at the same time, however, i was dealing with protests against our facilities that were clearly connected to that video. >> right -- >> so we were managing a number of such events. >> let's say you noted that -- and it can be, you know, people do this, so you can say that you said it, but the emphasis, we all remember what the emphasis was. over and over and over again it was repeated that we had enraged the islamic terrorists which by the way, what's that do? when you say that we enraged the islamic terrorists, that means
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we're at fault. they're not at fault. and then to look and see that the only people that i know were in jail right now is the film maker. isn't this a little disconcerting? >> well, first, congressman, i want to be clear that of course it was a terrorist attack. the very next day i called it an attack by heavily armed militants on our compound. i think there is still, however, questions about exactly what caused it, who the attackers were. the a.r.b., after months of research, said the picture is still very complicated. and i think it's worth members looking at both the unclassified and classified a.r.b. with that in mind. >> thank you. >> mr. meeks of new york. >> let me first thank you. first i want to thank you for an
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extraordinary door -- daughter who came to the rockaways after sandy. just helping people. >> thank you. >> unannounced, without fanfare. just getting down and helping people. because they needed help after that terrible storm. so just extraordinary public service. and then i want to also say, madam secretary, that you have been a secretary of state and an -- at an extraordinary time in the history of the united states of america and the world. and you have managed the challenge in an equally extraordinary manner. when you took the job america had a ta tarnished image abroad. you have revived our brand, traveled over a million miles to the furthest reaches of the world, to the most challenging areas, and touched the lives of most vulnerable. with your leadership of initiatives like the qddr, you have deepened our confidence that foreign aid can be responsibly spent. on behalf of a grateful nation and definitely the people of the
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fifth congressional district, i want to thank you for a job well done. the attacks on our mission in benghazi were a painful reminder to all of us that our diplomats of course are in harm's way. and there are in some of the same unstable and even hostile environments as our military. yet they don't have the same means of protecting themselves. and sadly we go back and talk, and i know that this committee i heard admiral mullen say that money was and is in the budget, is very important and makes a difference. yet, and sadly this heart has -- house has failed to do its part in addressing the challenges it faces. you however have been responsibly and accepted the recommendations of the a.r.b. and put measures in place immediately after the september attacks that demonstrate that you are serious about changing the status quo. but of course, again, it's a twoway street. congress has failed to act in a
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meaningful way and i believe it's a shame on the leadership for its failure to get to give the state department the authority to transfer already appropriated funds, not new money, already money that you have toward funds to bolstering security for our diplomats. to give you that discretion. and shame on the house for its feeling -- failing to adequately fund the administration's request for diplomatic security funding. now, i hope that this congress will act swiftly to fix these critical funding matters. there's also my hope, as you said, that we have a state authorization bill that the president can sign into law. let me ask you this question. at the time of the benghazi attacks you indicated there was a rising going on in egypt and yemen and in tunisia. it seems -- because no one could have imagined and i'm sure you did not when you initially took office that we would have the
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arab spring. and the nation of what was going on in these various countries would happen. i want to ask you a question, somewhat i guess what mr. sherman was asking about. because, get your thoughts on what we might do as members of congress and how we might move forward with the nations of the arab spring to so that maybe that is the way that we can prevent these kind of things from happening in the future. >> well, it's an excellent question, congressman. and it deserves a very thoughtful answer, longer than the time i have. but let me just make three quick points. first, we cannot retreat from, give up on, turn our backs on these new arab spring revolutionary countries and new regimes. they are very new, most of them have leads that are have never run anything. they have come from background where they are suspicious of security because security was a dirty word. it through them in jail, you know, harassed themselves and their families. so we have to do some work and
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that work requires that we stay engaged. secondly, we have to do a much better job in helping rebuild security apparatus that can be used. quick example, we had a terrible assault on our embassy in tunis. and i called the president of tunisia and said, you've got to send reinforcements right now. our embassy is going to be overrun. he sent it, it stopped. the government really has been responsive, understanding that, you know, these terrorists, these extremists don't just threaten us and western countries they threaten the stability and the future of these governments. so we have to help them the way we helped colombia years ago. and finally we need to do a better job conveying a counternarrative to the extremist jihadist narrative. you know, i've said this to this committee before, a lot of new members on it, you know, we have abdicated the broadcasting
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arena. yes, we have private stations, cnn, fox, nbc, all of that. they're out there, they convey information. but we're not doing what we did during the cold war. our broadcasting board of gonches is practically defunction in terms of its capacity to be able to tell a message around the world. so we're abdicating the ideological arena and we need to get back into it. we have the best values, we have the best narrative. most people in the world just want to have a good, decent life that is supported by a good, decent job and raise their families an we're letting the jihadist narrative fill a void. we need to get in there and compete and we can do it successfully. >> mr. chabot of ohio. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam secretary, first let me thank you for your service. and i wish you the best in your future endeavors. mostly. [laughter] i've got a couple of questions
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but i do want to take a moment or two to say a couple of words about our late ambassador, chris stevens. many members and staff on our committee have had the opportunity to know and to work with him even before he was named our u.s. ambassador to libya. and i think all would agree that he was one of our most able diplomats. i had the opportunity to meet with him in tripoli a little less than a month before he and three other outstanding americans were murdered in benghazi. his enthusiasm for the job was really something to behold. he was excited about the opportunity to help a nation newly freed from decades of brutal dictatorship. on my first night in the country, i had the opportunity to join the ambassador for a dinner with a number of newly elected libyan parliamentarians. they were optimistic about building a democracy, creating a
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vibrant economy and restoring fundamental human rights for the libyan people. and he was as enthusiastic as they were. about the prospect. there's no question that he'll be missed by all who knew him and who worked with him. one of the things that really troubles me, madam secretary, is the hoops that we on this committee have had to jump through to get to the facts surrounding the deaths of these public servants. the state department has delayed and delayed coming forth with information and when this committee was finally presented with relevant data, it amounts often times to what might be called a document dump. hundreds of pages of paper in wide disarray, no particular order, either in terms of relevance or in chronology, often in duplicate but in different binders, making it very difficult to locate documents that were of any help. our public servants in libya were murdered on september 11.
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it's now january 23. more than four months later. it's unacceptable that the state department has made it so difficult for congress to exercise its oversight responsibility. now, a couple of questions. within a couple of months of the attack, during the july, august period, ambassador stevens expressed concern about militia activity, particularly in benghazi. and the need for additional security assistance. we've seen the cables where security officers on the ground expressed considerable frustration at the difficulty in getting the personnel they believed were needed to protect american diplomats and property. and we now know that management of security personnel, especially the assignment of state department agents on very short-term duty, virtually guaranteeing very limited institutional knowledge, was grossly inadequate. why was the department hierarchy so objects nat? and why would the department deny a personal plea from
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ambassador stevens given his expertise on libyan affairs? why did the department senior leadership not take into consideration the approaching september 11 anniversary in particularly in light of direct requests from our mission in libya and finally, madam speaker, we've heard numerous times over the last several months that more funding is needed for diplomatic security. including in your testimony before the senate foreign relations committee and to some extent this afternoon. i don't believe there's anybody in this room who doesn't want to protect our diplomats stationed abroad. often in very dangerous regions. since 2000 congress has provided funding in the neighborhood of $10 billion for embassy security construction and maintenance and we will no doubt continue to provide significant funding in the future. given that our nation now faces a mountain of debt, sadly i might add given short solicit, i have to say, by the president in his inaugural address, of course means that we cannot fund every single program that every
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federal agency requests. so, when we increase funding in one area we have to consider cuts in others. at least that's the way it should work. the state department currently -- are they conducting any internal reviews, for example, to determine what offsets in current program funding might be considered? and finally, i know that some have been peddling this story about it's congress' fault for not providing sufficient funding for security. i will just note that robert balder, your chief financial officer for diplomatic security, stated and i quote, i do not feel that we have ever been at a point where we have sacrificed security due to lack of funding. and i note that i used my five minutes. so i would appreciate your remarks. >> the gentleman from ohio has used his five minutes and if we want to get through the members, we're going to have to hold to those five minutes. so i'll just ask for a response in writing and we'll go now to
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mr. deutch from florida. >> thank you, mr. chairman. we all have to wait long because those were some good questions that i'll take up in a moment. secretary clinton, first i'd like to thank you for the truly remarkable job that you've done as secretary of state. you have represented the interests of this nation magnificently. and i for one hope that after a bit of rest you will consider a return to public service and should that return bring to you florida, i will look forward to welcoming you there. i'd be remiss if i did not take this opportunity to once again thank you for your efforts on behalf of my constituent, robert levinson, who went missing in iran in 2007, now 2,147 days ago. and i ask that the department continue to do everything that it can to return robert to his family. i also want to thank you for the ways that you've handled the tragic events in benghazi. your personal commitment to ensuring that those americans who serve american interests
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overseas, often at great risk to themselves, is a testament to the commitment that you've shown throughout your tenure at state to strengthen our diplomatic efforts around the world. and i'd like to return to mr. chabot's question. much of -- there is an awful lot of debate here on the hill about how we spend our dollars. we all recognize that we have budgetary concerns. we also recognize that we have an obligation to provide security and to protect american personnel abroad. and as we've ended our military operations in iraq, as we wind down in afghanistan, what kind of -- i'd like to ask what kind of strain will the presence of less military personnel in the region put on diplomatic security? let's start with that. >> that's a very important question that we're really going to have to grapple with together. i would hope. we saw, for example, that when our troops withdrew from iraq it
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dramatically altered what our civilians were capable of being able to do. because there had been, over the course of the war in iraq, a very good working relationship between d.o.d., state and usaid. we're going to face the same kind of questions in afghanistan as our troops drawdown from afghanistan. and a lot of these places we don't have military resources. you know, the department of defense was a very good partner to us in responding to benghazi. but their assets were too far away to make much difference in any timely fashion. i think that that is going to look quite press yent because we're going to need to figure out how to work more effectively together between our civilian and military assets in africa and i think that would be a
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worthy subject of this committee, perhaps working with the armed services committee, because it's often difficult. but we -- in my four years we've tried to work out more cooperative relationships, more funding streams between state and d.o.d., in order to be able to maximize the operation between us. >> when you talk about the need to prioritize because of short falls, more marine security guards, talk about construction budgets and upgrades, what does that mean? what are the decisions that have to be made and how do they actually impact our diplomatic personnel? >> well, first and foremost we have to do the right job prioritizing based on the resources we do have. and i would be the first to say it's not all about money. but it's also not without budgetary consequences. and so we have to figure out what's the right balance. secondly, immediately after this happened, i spoke with secretary
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panetta, chairman dempsey, asked the defense department to work with us in putting together interagency security assessment teams, to go out and look at a high-threat post because our military brings a different perspective and that was a very important process which we are going to continue. we're also looking to see how we can better cooperate on the security aid that we give to other countries. it's got to be a combination of both military assets and expertise, but also development, rule of law, democracy building. it can't be one or the other. they have to be married together. >> and if you could, in the few seconds that we have left, madam secretary, could you just -- could you speak more broadly about the important role that that will play? and this budget debate that's going to take place, why is it so important for us to continue on this? >> well, let me just give you an example. colombia. you know, colombia 15, 20 years ago was in a very difficult state.
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it had an u.s. is, it had -- an insurgent, it had a drug cartel that was controlling. the united states stepped in, worked with the colombians and the progress is evident for all to see. there was a front page article about going to medellin. we don't do it ourselves. we partner with willing governments to help them acquire the capacity to protect their own citizens. >> we're going to mr. joe wilson of south carolina. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and, madam secretary, thank you for being here today. i particularly appreciate your recognition of africom and plan clomyafment indeed these have been extraordinary success stories promoting peace throughout the world. the american people always appreciate american heroes, chris stevens, sean smith, tyrone woods and glen doherty. i want to point out for the record i believe that congressman rohrabacher is correct.
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there was an email from the chief financial officer for zoment security following the benghazi attack. specific quote, although diplomatic security has been fiscally prudent, i do not feel that we have ever been in a point where we sacrifice security due to a lack of funding, end of quote. that actually is and atry beaut to you. and i have faith in the chief financial officer that it's a correct statement. as we begin, it's been reported that since you managed the response to the benghazi attack, why weren't you the person to appear on the sunday shows immediately following the attack? ambassador susan rice said that you declined. was that correct? >> well, i have to confess here in public, going on the sunday shows is not my favorite thing to do. there are other things i'd prefer to do on sunday mornings. and i haven't been on a sunday
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show in way over a year. so it just isn't something that i normally jump to do. and i did feel strongly that we had a lot that we had to manage, that i had to respond to and i thought that should be my priority. >> and i believe that part of the priority is telling correct information and you could have done that and i think it was just very unfortunate, the multiple appearances by ambassador rice with information that's been discovered not to be correct. in the november 21, 2012, edition of the "charleston post currier" a letter was published by a retired service officer. he wrote, within the u.s. state department there's an office known as the op center. it is located in the office of the secretary of state. it is staffed around the clock, 24/7 by seasoned foreign service officers. its function is to be sensitive
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to any threat to american interests wherever they might arise. the center has direct, secure communication lines to the white house situation room, the national military command center at the pentagon and the c.i.a.'s op center. having worked as a watch officer at the op center i know that any information that indicates a threat to the safety of american citizens overseas is passed to other agencies mentioned above. if it's of significant message concerning american interest is received, it is the watch officer's job to ensure that these other agencies are informed. he goes on, there are many questions that need to be answered and i'd like to present these questions on his behalf. first and foremost, what was going on at the op center of the state department in washington while our consulate was under attack for seven hours? >> well, we can certainly give you greater detail but the op center is as you have described.
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you know, the place where communications goes in and out. they were placing calls, they were receiving calls, they were deeply engage in trying to -- engaged in trying to help us. they don't reach out on their own. but to help us acquire information so we could respond in realtime. >> and in seven hours, i mean, goodness gracious, there should have been a response. why did the delay in labeling the attacks a terrorism when it was immediately known that it was? >> well, you know, again, i would say, congressman, that we described the attack, i described the attack the next morning, the president called it an act of terror. there was a, as you will find in reading both the unclassified and classified version of the a.r.b., there was a lot of questions about who was behind it, what motivated it and the a.r.b. says those questions are still not fully answered today. >> and he continues, why weren't marine guards posted in benghazi in the first place?
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>> because historically marine guards are at posts where there is classified information. marine guards have not historically had the responsibility for protecting personnel. their job is to protect and if necessary destroy classified material at. material. at our compound there was no classified material. >> and he continues in line with everybody else, pointing out that there were requests to enhance security, they were denied. we weren't able to reach all the questions. i appreciate you responding to the questions. i will submit them to the record for your office for a written response. >> thank you, congressman. >> thank you. >> karen bass of california. >> thank you very much. thank you, chairman royce, and ranking member engel, for convening this hearing. secretary clinton, i want to take the time to thank you for your willingness to come before this committee for the final time. and i want to offer my sincere and deep gratitude for your remarkable service to our nation. i'm also very demrood to know that you're feeling much better. for the past four years and well
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before, you have put country first and for our nation -- and for that our nation is indebted to you. with confidence and careful consideration you have shown extraordinary leadership on counts issues, ensuring the diplomacy is an essential part of our country's foreign policy. and your tireless efforts to elevate women and girls' rights is without comparison. you have strengthened our state department, made it better today than when you arrived. as ranking member on the africa subcommittee, i am especially appreciative of the attention you've given to the 54 congratulations -- nations of africa. while aftercation ca may lose one -- while africa may lose one of its champions at the state department, i trust africa will not be far from your thoughts and will remain a top priority in your exueture -- in your future work. i also want to associate my comments with congressman sherman who said that it's unfortunate that this is the last time we will hear from you. so i want to focus my time on moving us forward and asking your advice. you made reference in your
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testimony about best value contracts. and you mentioned, i believe, several nations where best value contracts are not used. and in thinking about africa and the instability and a number of nations in northern africa, central africa, mali, you know, what we're dealing with now, i want to know whether or not those nations are subject to those type of contracts and whether or not exemptions or waivers should be made? what should we do? >> congresswoman, thank you very much for your emphasis on africa, which i think is going to be increasingly important. there are only three nations where the state department has an exemption by congress for using different contracting rules in order to get the best value for our country. those are a rock -- iraq, afghanistan and pakistan. so every other country in the world we are under the kind of contracting rules that i think do interfere with our capacity
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to get the best deal, particularly when it comes to security, that we should in these countries where the threats unfortunately are going to always be with us. >> should we look to extend that to mali? to the d.r.c.? to somalia? >> well, i would certainly recommend -- there was an article in the -- i think in one of the newspapers today that went into some detail, basically here's how it started. for more than two decades federal laws required the state department to select the cheapest rather than the best contractor to provide local guard services at its embassies abroad. and you know there's that old saying you get what you pay for and this lowest price provision started off in 1990 but it has just stayed with us and i would respectfully request that this committee take a hard look at it. if you can't do a total lifting of it for everybody, at least look at the high threat posts
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where obviously we did it for iraq, afghanistan and pakistan and the countries your naming are the countries that i think would fall into that category. >> well, thank you very much. among the various islamic extremist groups operating in africa today, aqim, in your view, which pose the greatest threat, direct threat to the united states? and given the limited capacity and in some cases the limited political will in the countries in which these groups operate, are u.s. military, intelligence and security assistance, resources devoted to these threat it's adequately or appropriated balanced and what recommends -- recommendations would you have for us? >> if you're focusing just on north africa, al qaeda is a brand name. as much as an organization. people wake up, they form these jihadist groups, they then claim to be associated with, somehow affiliated with al qaeda in
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order to gain some credibility. with local people as well as beyond. i think that we have to take seriously all of these terrorist groups. whatever they call themselves. now, at the moment they don't necessarily have either the interest or the ability to attack our homeland. but we have a lot of facilities. we have a lot of assets in north africa. we just saw americans killed and held hostage at a gas facility because we do business all over that continent. so i think we have to take a hard look at all of them and constantly be upping our military and intelligence and diplomatic assets to deal with them. >> thank you very much. >> i'd like to just take a moment and explain to the gentlelady, we passed last year the best value contract language that you're speaking of in the house passed appropriations measure. we're going to try to get our colleagues in the senate to take
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that measure up. we go now to mr. mccaul from texas. >> thank you, mr. chairman. welcome, madam secretary. thank you for your service. similar to september 11, 2001, there were warning signs prior to benghazi september 11. there was an april 6, 2012, crude i.e.d. thrown over the wall of the u.s. facility in benghazi. on may 22, 2012, a building in benghazi hit by two r.p.g.'s. the brigades took responsibility for that attack. on june 6, 2012, u.s. consulate in benghazi was targeted by an i.e.d. an attack that blew a hole in the perimeter wall, again, the blind sheik brigade taking credit. and then on august 16 we had this cable that's been widely reported, a classified state department cable, warning that the benghazi consulate could not with stand a cord coordinated
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attack. and the regional scored a officer believed our cons -- coordinated officer believed our consulate could not be protected less than a month before the attack. a contingency plan was supposedly drafted to move the operations through the c.i.a. annex about a while away from the compound. this cable is presumed to have been shared by senior staff, it was sent to your office, it was sent to the n.f.c., and even on september 11, the day ambassador stevens was killed, he personally warned about, quote, a growing problems with security in benghazi and growing frustration with security forces and the libyan police. were you aware of this cable, this august 16 cable? >> congressman, that cable did not come to my attention. i have made it very clear that the security cables did not come to my attention or above the assistance secretary --
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assistant secretary level where the a.r.b. placed responsibility, whereas i think ambassador pickering said the rubber hit the road. now, i think -- >> when were you aware of this cable? >> after the a.r.b. began to gather information and material which of course -- >> who was in your office -- who in your office did see this cable? >> i'm not aware of anyone within my office, within the secretary's office, having seen the cable. >> within the national security counsel? -- council? >> i have no information or awareness of anyone in the national security council having seen that cavenlt >> was this -- cable. >> was this cable a surprise to you? >> you know, congressman, it was very disappointing to me that the a.r.b. concluded there were inadequacies and problems in the responsiveness of our team here
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in washington to the security requests that were made by our team in libya. and i was not aware of that going on of the it was not brought to my attention but obviously it's something we're fixing and intend to put into place protocols and systems to make sure it doesn't happen again. >> i certainly hope so. i think when you have a united states ambassador personally warning about the situation over there, sending this cable to your office -- >> if i could -- 1.43 million cables a year come to the state department. they are all addressed to me. they do not all come to me. there are reported through the bureaucracy. >> certainly somebody within your office should have seen this cable, is my -- in my judgment. could i ask one last question? >> also, i just want to clarify. you know, as with regard to the security requests subsequent to
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the august 16 cable, our personnel in libya had not submitted any additional security requests to washington at the time of the september 11 attack. now, there was an ongoing dialogue as you know between libya and washington. i think it is -- >> requesting, mee time is very limited, an emergency meeting was held and a cable sent out on august 16 by the ambassador himself. warning of what could happen. and this meant this cable went unnoticed by your office. that's the bottom line. >> the facts as we have them, congressman, and i will be happy to have people give you this in detaillight, the august 16 cable stated the r.s.o. in benghazi submitted a preliminary list of proposed security recommendations but no requests were submitted to washington before the attacks. this sound very complicated and
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to some extent it is, we're trying to simplify it and avoid the kind of problems that are identified. >> one last question. why was he in benghazi on september 11? >> going to go now to -- >> i'll submit that question in righting -- writing. >> we'll go to mr. william keith of massachusetts. >> thank you, mr. chairman. you know, i must say that after the tragedy last september, one of the things that just moved me so much were the comments of the family members of one of the heroes who lost their lives. glen daherty in massachusetts. they told people that they shouldn't lose sight of who is ultimately responsible. for these deaths. an amazing statement putting things into perspective here. the other thing they mentioned was, do not lose sight of the causes that these men gave their lives for. and as a person who has advanced those causes, i want to thank
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you for your incredible service as secretary of state. now, one of the parts of the a.r.b. report is of great concern to me. dealt with what they described as a culture of austerity in the state department. and can you take a few moments and expand on the a.r.b.'s finding on that subject and how it affects the state department's ability to carry out crucial tasks? not just security, -- security, but all crucial tasks. >> congressman, that is what the a.r.b. found. they found that there was a culture of husbanding resources, of being quite concerned about responding, even on security, as important as security is, because one never knows what the budget's going to be going forward. and we've had some ups and downs budgetarywise going back, as i said, into prior administrations.
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but it is fair to say that many of the professionals in the state department have really gotten used to worrying greatly that they'll give something to somebody and that will become an expectation that will then have to be taken away and it did affect the security professionals' decisions according to the a.r.b. >> these prioritizations in my opinion, and this culture, has to change. not just for security reasons but for our overall mission. just quickly, two, with the crisis in mali and the suth there and the -- u.s. is -- insurgency there and the spreading threat, you know, in that area the relatively technologically advanced and there's threats that go along those lines that i'm concerned about in terms of cultural austerity there as well. cyberthreats and other security upgrades that are going to be
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vitally necessary. i hope those kind of things are not lost as we review this situation. can you just comment on what we need in that regard going forward? and how much of a threat this may pose to us? >> well, you mentioned a word that is rarely mentioned in these hearings but i predict will be a major threat to us and that's cyber, because it's not only going to be nation states where we already are seeing cyberintrusions, both against our government and against our private sector, but increasingly nonstate actors will have more capacity to disrupt, to hack into, to put out false information, to accuse the united states of saying -- things that can light fires before we can put them out. so, you know, i think it's important we have a really thoughtful comprehensive review about the threats of today and the threats of tomorrow. and that will help guide the
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committee, it will help guide the senate and certainly the administration in working together to answer them. >> thank you. and thank you, madam chairman. i think i'm going to do something that hasn't been done yet. i'm going to yield back the rest of my time. >> we go now to mr. poe of texas. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam secretary, thank you once again for your service to our country. gordon rollland from oregon, frederick from caty, texas, and victor from my district, three americans overseas killed not in benghazi but killed at a remote gas facility in algeria. killed in my opinion because they were americans. over the last weekend myself and others have tried to get information. i will just say that there's too
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much in my opinion, red tape, from trying to get just basic information to the families as to what happened in a situation like that. i would hope that the state department would look at that protocol and try to streamline it because people died. the algerian government now reports, after they have captured some of the terrorists alive, some from claiming to be from egypt, one says that after interrogation by the algerian government, whatever that interrogation may entail, that there were egyptians involved in the benghazi attack and that were at the attack on the gas plant in algeria.
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at the time of the benghazi attack, an saral shari'a the next day claimed responsibility for the attack. we probably don't know if the statements made by the algerian or excuse me egyptian terrorists that was capture ready true or if the egyptians were involved in that attack or not. it does seem to show that the whole region is very fluid with different groups getting together, causing mischief throughout the entire region. as of today, several months later, after the attacks on benghazi, has to your knowledge any person been put currently in custody anywhere by any government for the responsibility or as a suspect involved in the benghazi attack?
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>> congressman, there is one potential suspect who has been placed under monitoring by the to you initialan government. there are -- tunishan government. there are other suspects that the f.b.i. are both closely following and consulting with partner governments. i think based on my last conversation with director muller, which was just a few days ago, he went to libya, he went to tunisia. he believes that the investigation is proceeding. i know that the f.b.i. has been up on the hill doing classified briefings with certain committees. i don't know about this committee. but i certainly hope that the f.b.i. is able to investigate, identify and hold responsible those who wage this attack
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against us and i think that based on their work, they feel that they are pursuing some very positive leads. >> ok. my understanding is the to you initialan person that was held in tunisia was released by a judge. basically at this point we don't really know who did it. >> congressman, i confirmed with director muller who was just in tunisia meeting with their high officials that this person is basically under law enforcement surveillance and for biden to leave -- forbidden to leave tunis. director muller told me that that had been confirmed to him by the tunisians. >> just very briefly, we don't know who -- no one's been held accountable, charged with this offense. before gaddafi was taken out, my
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understanding is the nation of qatar shipped in 18 shipments, 20,000 tons of weapons, machine guns, r.p.g.'s into the region to help different groups overthrow omar gaddafi. the united states gave a wink and a nod to this and i'd like a written answer to that, mr. chairman. >> thank you. we'll go now to mr. cicilline from rhode island. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you, madam secretary, for your extraordinary service to our country. that has earned you the deep respect and admiration of people all over the world and has enhanced america's standing all over the globe. your leadership on women's issues, lgbt equality, supporting emerging democracies and enhancing american national security are too numerous to list. but i want to begin by thanking
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you for all of your hard work and everything you have done in service of our country. thank you also for your testimony today. the terrorist attacks on september 11 in benghazi, libya, resulted in the tragic deaths of ambassador stevens, sean smith, tyrone woods and glen daugherty and these are constant reminders of the dangerous work that our diplomats engage in every single day all throughout the world. and while we cannot eliminate all risks, it's our duty to enact protocols and policies that will reduce these risks and provide all the support necessary to help mitigation an manage those risks. with that in mind, i hope my colleagues will consider the accountability review board with you you, madam secretary, convened and call for a more serious and contained commitment from congress to support state department needs. this is particularly important given the potential government shutdown would have on our
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diplomatic security, especially in high-risk posts. i also want to take a moment to commend and thank admiral mullen for the comprehensive and prompt review that they conducted and of course applaud you, madam secretary, for the adoption of all -- adoption of all 25 recommendations and proudly undertaking their implementation and providing guidance on the status of that implementation here today. and just to say that there's been some discussion about the importance of getting to the nitty gritty and fixing problems. and host: that we will rely on the -- and i hope that we will rely on the security professionals and the expert advise and recommendations. and so i want to ask you, madam secretary, i know one of the things that you did was to -- actually in anticipation of some of the recommendations, you created for the first time ever a diplomatic security deputy assistant secretary. and i think with respect to the arab -- a.r.b. report the importance of examining the state department's organization
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and management as it represents to security planning might -- my expectations that that would be a responsible of this new position. could you tell us about the role of this new secretary within the bureau, what responsibilities the position will have and will this individual in particular have the authority to reallocate resources in order to fill potential resource gaps if that's one of the challenges he faces? >> thank you, congressman. this is a deputy assistant secretary for high-threat posts. i want one person held accountable, looking at these high-threat posts, talking to our military and intelligence partners, being a voice at the table, not just for all 275 posts, but really zeroing in on a realtime constant evaluation about what our high-threat posts need. but in addition to that we're going to continue our work with the defense department and the interagency security assessment
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threats. i'm also for the first time elevating a lot of these security issues for high-threat posts to the secretarial level because it hasn't been there before and i think given what we've experienced it needs to be . we're also looking for the transfer authority to add to our marine security guards, our construction and our diplomatic security. we're enhancing the training for everyone. we're taking a hard look at another problem that the a.r.b. pointed out and that was our temporary duty assignments. you know, very often, given especially the experiences we've had in iraq and afghanistan, and to a lesser extent in some other large posts, we have a lot of our most experienced diplomatic security people going there. i mean, you know, in the two times we've had serious assaults on our embassy in kabul, kabul is fortified, kabul has the isa
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troops across the street. as they draw down we have to recognize that the danger is not going to leave with our isaps military. so we have to take a hard look at all of this and we have to imbed that responsibility in this new experienced deputy assistant secretary to do that. >> thank you. i yield back, mr. chairman. >> matt salmon of arizona. >> thank you, madam secretary, i appreciate your desire to come before our committee today. to testify and answer questions to help us make the changes necessary. to ensure the safety of all of our foreign service officers. but particularly those who are making the heavy sacrifices servicing in high-threat regions. but i've got to say that i am troubled by what seems to be this administration's pattern of misleading the american people and failing to hold decision makers accountable. from operation fast and furious, where attorney generic holder has repeat lid misled the
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american people and congress about an intentional international gun walking scheme, to u.n. secretary susan rice who on five separate occasions went before the american people days after the attacks on benghazi talking about a demonstration at a facility that never happened. it was not even suggested in any of the reports and information coming from benghazi. i know the purpose of this hearing is to find out how to ensure another benghazi never happens again. i hope that we'd all include the aftermath of the tragedy as well. how we make sure that such gross mispreparations of -- mispresentations of attacks on americans never happens again, a couple of other questions, i know you put the four individuals identified as culpable by the accountability review board on administrative leave. what do you anticipate will be the final resolution of their status with the department? and the accountability review board did not identify any individuals above the secretary
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-- excuse me, assistant secretary level as accountable for the security failures of the benghazi mission. you said that the numerous cables requesting and begging for additional security resources sent by that ambassador chris stevens were nemp seen by state officials -- were never seen by state officials above assistant secretary or deputy assistant secretary. i know you care very deeply about the people that work with you in the department. so, given the fact that your testimony is that you never saw any of these multiple requests and nobody above assistant secretary level saw these requests, doesn't that give you some concerns about the flow of information within the department? and maybe some of your under lings' ability to prioritize and get to your attention serious issues? you said that you get hundreds of thousands of cables all the time and these cables directly to you. i understand that you don't read
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them all and nor do you have the time to do that. i would think that within the department you would have people that work for you that are able to prioritize and get to you the ones that are more serious in nature and especially when somebody's security is on the line. finally, president truman had a placard on his dessthack said the buck stops here. i know that you've taken responsibility and i applaud you for that. but i really hope that this isn't just an exercise, another exercise in finding lower level bureaucrats we can kind of throw under the bus and actually get somewhere with this, not about a game of gotcha, but how can we fix this for the future and i yield back the balance and i'd love your answers. . >> conditioning -- congressman that's what i'm intelligent on doing. the reason these were created is to take a dispassionate, independent view of what happened and then come up with
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recommendations that are the responsibility of the department to implement. the arb make -- the a.r.b. makes clear that chris stevens who probably knew more about libya than anybody else in our government did not see a direct threat of an attack of this nature and scale. the overall trend of security problems that we faced and i have to add neither did the intelligence community. the a.r.b. makes that very clear that the intelligence community also did not really zero in on the connection between the deteriorating threat environment in eastern libya and in benghazi and a direct threat on our compound. we have work to do inside the department, we have work to do with our partners and the
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d.o.d. and intelligence community to constantly be taking in information, making sure it does get to the right people that it isn't somehow stovepiped or stalled but that it does rise to decisionmakers and i'm committed to improving every way that i can on what the a.r.b. told us to do on assessing our intelligence and i think that it's fair to say, congressman, that we have to do this now because i predict we're going to be, as we saw in algeria, all kinds of asymmetric, not just to government facilities but to private sector facilities. in tunisia, we protected our embassy but the school was badly damaged. we have to take a broader view but the a.r.b. recommends.
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>> thank you very much for your contribution securing america's place in the world the last four years and for your contribution to world peace. the report does identify specifically people who were found to have engaged in the department in systematic failures and deficiencies. i want to be clear about this, you were not one of those people, is that correct? >> that's correct. >> it was identified earlier that a report dating from the 1990's had said that the secretary should take a personal and active role in security. have you done that in four years at the state department? >> i have been very attuned to the environment in which threats are occurring, the intelligence that is available, certainly not the specific request and decision making which rests with the security professionals. >> regarding the security
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professionals is there anybody now in existence in the department who is responsible for viewing the itineraries of ambassadors in advance, in order to determine whether there's an undue threat to their safety? to the general answer to that is no, ambassadors are given what's called chief of mission authority. ambassadors, especially those who we ask to go to dangerous posts, are pretty independent folks. some of them might say, well, what do you think about this or that, but most of them make their own digs. chris stevens did not ask anyone for permission to go to benghazi, i don't think it would have crossed his mind. robert ford, who served as our ambassador to syria, when out on numerous ocases -- occasions to talk to the opposition before we pulled him out of damascus. we had, you know, very brave ambassadors like ryan crocker, one of our very best, who it
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would be difficult to say, ryan, you can't go do this even though you decided you should do it. what we're trying to do is create a more ongoing discussion between our ambassadors, our bureaus back in the state department who are regional experts, and our security people so that at the very least no ambassador is taking an unnecessary risk, however that is defined. >> with regard to ambassador stevens, certainly it was brave of him to go to benghazi on the date he did. i have to ask you honestly, though, was there anything in his itinerary on the 10th or 11th that required his personal presence? >> he certainly thought so, congressman he did, of course, discuss this with his own security people. we do have regional security officers in these posts. they are the ones that an ambassador will turn. to he believes it was important
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for him to go to benghazi, there were a number of meetings that he was holding and some public events that he had on his schedule and you know, he was someone who really believed strongly he had to get out there and i think as the a.r.b. pointed out, he was given great deference by the rest of the government. >> do you have any concept of the number of american troops it might have take ton actually create a totally secure environment for him in benghazi on september 10 and 11? >> no. the number of diplomatic security personnel requested in the cables is five. there were five there that night. with him. plus there was a mutual understanding with the annex that had a much more heavily armed presence because of the
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work they were doing in the region. it is very difficult to, in retrospect, to really anticipate what might have been . one of the r.s.o.'s who had served in libya said the kind of attack the compound suffered had not been anticipated. we had gotten used to preparing for car bombs and suicide bombings and things like that but this was of a different nature. and we even saw that at the annex, which was much more heavily fort fid, had much more heavy military equipment, we lost two of our best and had one of our diplomatic security officers badly injured. he's still at walter reed. so even the annex which had more assets in the face of the attack was suffering losses that night. >> thank you very much. >> mr. moreno of pennsylvania.
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>> good afternoon, madam speaker -- madam secretary. in august of 2012, after the benghazi attack, they published a report on behalf of al qaeda in lib rah, it detailed particularly in east libya. something alarming to me in this d.o.d. report was the mention that al qaeda groups in lib ja have adopted the black flag which symbolizes commitment to violent jihad promoted by al qaeda's senior leaders. in my hand, i hold a picture of the flag that the department of state identified to be a prominent issuance of this flag and on the rise in libya. i also hold a picture of the same type of flag in tunisia,
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where the protesters are outside. in addition i have a flag, the picture was taken in cairo, at a u.s. embassy where demonstrations took place. another picture in jordan at the u.s. embassy where protests took place. in bahrain, over 2,000 protesters who burned numerous u.s. and israeli flags, again at the embassy. in kuwait, u.s. embassy 500 demonstrators chanting obama, we are all osama. again. and again, a flag flown and carried through the streets as well. my question, madam secretary, were you aware of the d.o.d. report prior to the terrorist attack in benghazi? >> i was certainly aware of a
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number of reports from throughout our government. i don't know of the specific one you were referring to. there were d.o.d. reports, state department reports, talking about the decreasing or the increasing threat environment in eastern libya. that was what we were trying to address with the libyans. and remember the election in july in libya brought to victory what we would consider moderate people who had a very different view of it than al qaeda or other groups. the united states has to be as effective partnering with jihaddists whether they fly a black flag or other flag. >> i clearly understand that. however this flag was pointed
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out to be affiliated with al qaeda, terrorists who attack and kill united states citizens from around the world. did anyone in your department below you, were they aware of this report and photos prior to and don't you think they should have brought this to your attention? >> i am well aware there were people claiming to be associated with al qaeda. that were attempting to influence militias, attempting to exercise more authority, along with a number of other groups that didn't necessarily work under that flag but had the same militant jihaddist mentality. i was certainly aware of that. so was chris stevens, so was our team in libya. >> my point is this flag kept coming up and you did not think that was important enough to increase security when after
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how many embassies with this flag was shown in demonstrations? i think it would demand an increase in security. those below you that might have known this should have brought it to your attention. i come from industry, i come from government. there are individuals that just have to be cut loose when they're not performing their tasks. are these three people that are elite, are they still being paid? >>er on administrative leave and under federal law and regulation, they are being paid. >> what's the holdup? >> there are regulations and laws that have to be followed. >> what's the holdup in saying, you three let me down, this should have been brought to my attention, we know lo -- we no longer need you. >> personnel discussions are not appropriation for public settings. we have taken every step that was available and will continue to do so and we are looking for additional authority. to just finish up an oh -- on the points you made, we had
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good security at all those embassies other than in tunisia and then when they were asked to respond they did. i go back to the point on the other side of the aisle, we are dependent on government support and where it does exist unless we invade and unless we have a big military presence in a country, we are doing the best we can with our diplomatic security and private security guards. >> mr. vargas of california. >> thank you very much, michigan, -- mr. chairman, for the opportunity and thank you very much, madam secretary, for being here and i want to thank you for the excellent work you've done not only here in the united states but across the world. i have to say that because it's true and secondly, i don't think my wife, my 16-year-old daughter or my 9-year-old daughter, she'd probably turn on me and wouldn't let me in the house if i didn't say that.
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you are a hero to many, especially women. you seem to bring out deep aspirations in them that i've never seen anybody do before. thank you for your service. when i was reading the information here, it brought back to mind another assassination, murder, i was jesuit for five years and spernt time in el sal vacor. in 1989, there was an assassination of several priests, the housekeeper, and her young daughter, 15 years old. i knew them because i worked with them. i know the pain i felt when i heard that they died. i had left the jesuits by then.
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so i know that you being the superior of the people who died , that's why i'm glad we brought up the names here, it's important to mention the names, ambassador christopher stephens, mr. shaun smith, mr. tyrone woods, mr. again dougherty, many of us have falte they didn't die in vain. one of the things that troubled me as i read this was the reliance we have on local security. that's the part that didn't make sense to me. i come from san diego, we have the marine corps there. we have the navy, we have incredibly good security and service people. why don't we rely more on them. >> that's an excellent question. you brought back some very sad memories in talking about the losses that occurred in el salvador. you know, we do rely primarily
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on host nation support but we have to take a harder look at the commitment and the capacity of these host nations and therefore in places all over the world, we also have private security guards, some armed, some unarmed, we have marine guards at many places, about 150 who at least are demonstrating a line of defense but we have to do more. when you ask why do we rely on these, in part because we don't have military assets everywhere. if you look at the statements, particularly by admiral mullen, who was our chairman of our joint chief he said, we have to work together more closely between state and d.o.d. but it's unrealistic, in his words, to tether our military to every high risk post.
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part of what we're trying to struggle with is how do we make our facilities as secure as possible without turning them into fortresses, because our diplomats are not soldiers, how do we have reliable private security. the brigade was a libya supported militia that had been protecting stevens before gaddafi fell. they'd been reliable, been responsive but they weren't available in the first minutes and hours of the attack on our compound. we also contracted with a private security company that had a permit to operate in lib yasm because you know the united states, unless we go into a country with massive military force, we, you know, go in and we follow the rules of the country. and we had to get a security force that had a permit from the libyan government. so these are all issues that are being looked at so we try
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to fill the gaps that have been identified. >> thank you. the last thing i would just correct, you said earlier, that we haven't done enough promoting ourselves around the country and the world, i think you have. you have done a fantastic job and other than president kennedy, i don't know anyone who has had a better image in the latin americas. >> thank you very much, congressman. >> we go now to mr. duncan of south carolina. >> madam secretary, let me tell you, americans are frustrated. they're frustrated over the handle of benghazi, what happened when four americans died there, they're frustrated and sometimes down right angry about being what they think, being misled about what really happened there. being told that this was a protest over a video, not just for a couple of days but for weeks on end. and then they're frustrated when they see comments from you this morning when you said what difference at this point does it make?
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i'll tell you what difference it makes. it makes a difference when americans think they were misled about something for political reasons. in the hearing this morning you mentioned that we were clear-eyed about the threats and dangers as they were developing in eastern libya. madam secretary if you were really new york your words, clear-eyed, about the levels of threat to our consulate in benghazi or our special mission in benghazi, then you should have known about chris stevens' memo i believe of 16 august that said our consulate could not be defended from a coordinated attack. questions americans have is, did he expect an attack? if you were clear-eyed why did your department reject the request i believe on 7 june for 16 additional security agents. a team that would have been funded by d.o.d. if you were clear-eyed shouldn't you have known that
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there was no real libyan government to turn to for security assistance. you answer that question from mr. meeks earlier, you said you were unsure about the libyan government and their ability to provide that assistance. if you were clear-eyed were you clear-eyed about al qaeda's displeasure with whom we seem to be supporting during the summer elections, the moderate that was elected. if you were clear-eyed shouldn't you have known that al qaeda roams freely in and around benghazi. as my friend from pennsylvania pointed out there were al qaeda flags not just at the protest but flying all over benghazi. if you were clear-eyed were you clear-eyed when the brits left benghazi because they had the attack? why did four americans die? what was so important that ambassador stevens, if he knew there was a security threat in benghazi, he went there on september 10 and 11 and gave his life for our country. what was so important for him to go to eastern libya, knowing
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all these threats are clear, i think you misspoke earlier when you said you didn't know of any requests that were denied for more security. june 7 email exchange between ambassador stevens and moretti, he requested an additional m.s.d. team. moretti said unfortunately m.s.d. can't support the request. there was a request made and it was denied on june 7. so madam secretary, you let the consulate become a death trap. that's malpractice. what does responsibility mean, madam secretary. there were four people at the department of state. i heard the answer about about firing or removing personnel.
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at what point in time can our administration fire someone whose -- not fire someone whose gross negligence resulted in the deaths of four americans. >> i think i've made that clear. let me say we've come here and made a very open, transparent presentation, i did not have to declassify the a.r.b. i could have joined 18 of the other a.r.b.'s under both democratic and republican administrations, kept it classified and just said good-bye. that's not who i am, that's not what i do. and i have great confidence that the accountability review board did the job they were asked to do, made the recommendations they thought were based on evidence, not on emotions. >> there was a lot of evidence, reclaiming my time there was a
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lot of evidence that led up to the security situation. you mentioned transparency. you haven't provided the call log of messages, instant messages during the attack between the post and the operations center, in an air of transparency will you release these logs? >> i will get an answer to you on that but i will tell you once more, the reason we have accountability review boards is we take out of poll -- take out politics, take out emotions and try to get to the truth. i think this distinguished panel did just that. we are working diligently over time to implement their recommendations. that is my responsibility. i'm going to do everything i can before i finish my tenure and i would also, going back to your first point about the concerns that people you represented have expressed about statements made, i would refer you both to the
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unclassified version of the a.r.b. where after months of research and talking to more than 100 witnesses, the picture is still very complicated about what happened that night, there are key questions i'm quoting surrounding the identity actions -- identity, actions and motivation of the perpetrators that remain to be determined. i recommend every member read the classified version that gos into greater detail that i cannot speak about here today. >> it was a tritcht attack, the motivation is clear. >> mr. schneider. >> thank you for joining us. we are grateful. let me also echo the words of my colleagues and extend my personal gratitude for your service you did our nation well and made our nation proud. you've done an extraordinary job as the nation's top diplomat and you will be sorely missed. the attacks claimed the lives of four americans including
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that of ambassador chris stevens who did so much to help the libyans. he returned because he knew the important work of building a new libya remained unfinished. ambassadors knowingly put themselves in danger to serve their country. while we know the jobs are not without risk we must do more to support our diplomats. i am pleased the state department conducted a serious investigation and appreciate that you have already stated you'll accept every up with of the 29 review board's recommendations. the state department is increasingly operating in high threat locations throughout the world requiring our diplomats to be stationed further afield and closer to dangers on the ground. this not only raises the security risk by our diplomat but places a strain on existing resources. as we move forward, how will the state department evaluate the benefits to u.s. interests from having an official
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presence in a given location versus the security risks faced by that mission? how do you expect the department will weigh the physical and technical and political costs as opposed to the gains of operating in frontline states? and last, what changes do you think these demands will require vis-a-vis people and other resources at the state department. >> very important questions and i can't do justice to them in the time left. we will certainly get you additional written information. let me briefly say, congressman, you know, i ordered the first ever quadrenall diplomacy and -- review because i said, i serve opped the armed services committee, where we get every four years a quadrenall defense review which helps the armed services committees in both houses plan for their authorization. i wanted to lay the groundwork for us to do the same with the state department. in that document we began what is a very difficult analysis
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about how to balance and mitigate risk versus presence. it was part of the -- it was un-- it was one of the most challenging aspects of the process. and we have an ongoing effort under way because if you talk to many of our ambassadors who, especially the experienced ones, they really don't want to be told by washington or anybody where they can go, when they can go, what they can do. they've been in the foreign service 10, 20, 30 years or more and they believe in their missions and they believe they have a better sense of how to evaluate risk. at the same time we have to be conscious of and make decisions about how to protect not just ambassadors but all our personnel and their families in these high-risk posts. it is a constant debate. we have authorized departure, we have ordered departure and it is something that we take very seriously when we do it.
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when we left benghazi on the night of 11th, 12th, others were still there. the italians were there, the turks were there. people evaluate risk over time and i think it's important to do what we can to minimize it, some of that will be done by technology, some by hard security and some by what we call soft power. but trying to get the balance right is very difficult. >> as we look forward to the steps taken, how do we ensure, we'll be in new places, face new challenges, how do we make sure we are able to provide the resources to high risk, high threat posts? >> very, very difficult. you know, that's going to be a question of new streamlined processes and protocols, sufficient security both hard and soft and resources. and we have to -- we have to
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ask you based on our best assessment about what we need to do our job. sometimes, you know, you've got a budget process and nobody has predicted that you're going to have a revolution against gaddafi. then you've got to scramble. how do you get somebody into benghazi and what to do in tripoli. i could go down the line and tell you 10 or 20 of those examples we live with every day. we, it's more of an art than a science to be honest. as of now we don't have hard parameters but we're trying to develop the best we can. >> thank you. >> madam secretary, i understand you have a meeting at the white house but have agreed to stay so that members can have a few more questions, we'll end by 5:00 and we appreciate that. we want to go to mr. kissinger of illinois. >> thank you, madam secretary,
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thank you for staying, appreciate it. appreciate your service to your country. as was mentioned earlier, look forward to your next steps, let me just say i'm actually an air force pilot. i have a few rn concerns i want to lay out. one of the first thing i was told as a pilot is your country will never leave you behind. if you find mours down in enemy lines your country will move heaven and earth to come get you. if you find quours in armed conflict your country will do everything in its power to save you from that. as a representative of the administration here i have to ask you this. from the initial attack to the second attack, there was a lull of seven hours. i'm going to say this, i was one of a handful of republicans to vote to support the president's position in libia. i think we did the right thing there. i did it with the knowledge that we would have the forces in place to rescue personnel in a tough situation. in that intervening seven hours, military assets to what we know, what we can talk about
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were not put in place. there's an air base 1,044 miles from benghazi. airplanes could have been put in the air, even without missiles, there are nonviolent things they can do to disperse crowds. also when you briefed us, it's been hammered a little bit but when you briefed us you said this was a result of the video. i remember in fact, pretty upset about it -- you got upset when somebody suggested there was a terrorist attack. this was our briefing we had. but we find out now it wasn't the video. it was a terrorist attack. when we come talk about the issue of the drone and the surveillance overhead, if there was a link from the drone to watch what was going on live or
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somebody under you was able to watch what was going on live or maybe that link was down. another question, i watched your testimony in the senate. you said part of the reason we have a little bit of delay in understanding what was going on, we did not have immediate access to the security cameras, the security footage. but yet at the same time, you had mortars being reported as being fired on security personnel. if i would hear that mortars are being fired i would immediately assume regardless of whether i could see what was going on overhead, regardless if i could see the security footage, that this is more than a spontaneous demonstration. the other question i have, i'm laying a few out for you, the foreign response team. was that your decision not to deploy that right away? was that logistics? where did that come from? and the final i think i want to say, again, as a believer, which i think you believe, that we are in a time where it was very important for american
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leadership to be out in front, to prevent a resurgence of jihaddist activities of al qaeda activity, i'm worried about the strategy of leading from behind. if the united states ambassador in libya, and i say this respectfully, can't get a message forward to the secretary of state about his security, one of the most hot zones in the world i worry about a lead from behind strategy. if we have no assets on alert that can respond in a seven-hour lull in two different attacks in one of the most hot spots in the world, on 9/11, on the anniversary, is the lead from behind strategy failing? because i really want american leadership to be strong. i believe in freedom and i believe we're the people that will be able to take freedom around the globe. with that, i give you the remaining minute and thank you for your generosity. >> i thank you for your service
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both in the air force and here. there was a lot packed into that. let me see what i can cover quickly and we'll get the rest to you in writing. d.o.d. took every action it could take starting from the time that the president directed secretary panetta and chairman dempsey to do so. again, i turned to the a.r.b. because that's to me a much more factually based finding, the board found no evidence of any undue delays in decision making or denial of support from washington or military combatant commanders. quite the contrary, the safe evacuation of all u.s. government personnel 12 hours after the initial attack and subsequently to ram stein was the result of exceptional coord neigh and response and helped save the lives of two severely wounded americans. having said that, i think it's porn we do more to coordinate with d.o.d. along the lines of
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what you're talking about because who knows what's going to be facing us in the next months and years. with respect to the video, i did not -- with rment to pred tar feed or video of the attack, we could not see that at the state department. there was no access to that, at no time did i have a live feed of the attack. not from any system in our compound and not from the annex or from any u.a.d. there's been confusion because we did talk a lot about the surveillance camera video that eventually got to us. i will give you more information about that because i think it is important to understand how this happened and as you know, congressman, the annex was not under my
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authority, informs was flowing into another agency, more than one other agency, and those people were incredibly brave but overwhelmed as well. >> mr. kennedy of massachusetts. >> thank you, mr. chairman. madam secretary, thank you for what i can only describe as a truly exemple player career -- exemplary career. i have two broad-based questions for you, ma tam secretary. you have held this office for four years at an extraordinarily challenging time in our history. we passed the two-year an verse -- anniversary of the arab awakening and we're veeg ports from africa and the mideast around pakistan and afghanistan, as you quote on
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your -- close on your tenure i wondered if you'd share some important lessons learned from the time you spent in this post and enlighten us as to what congress can do to help respond and get in front of these threats as we move forward and related to that, if i may, assuming that you're going to say about increased engagement at the ground level. how do we do that in areas that are unstable where we need to depend on local government or local security forces that quite frankly we've seen don't have the ability to provide the type of security that our diplomats are going to demand? >> congressman it's wonderful to see you here. i thank you for your interest in looking sort of into the future. let me just make a couple of points. first, we have a lot of tools that we don't use as well as we
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should. i think we've abdicated the broadcasting arena where both in tv and radio, which are considered kind of old fashioned, media are still very important in a lot of difficult places where we're trying to do business. i think we have to get our act together. i would hope this committee would pay attention to the broadcasting board of governors which is in kess desperate need of assistance, intervention, and change. i think, too, social media is a great tool, we've begun trying to use it much more in the state department and not communicate with leaders and officials, i started two organizations, one a new
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operation inside the state department that is staffed with interagency experts so i'm not saying anything that's classified but it's beginning to try to respond to al qaeda and other jihaddist propaganda. so if they put up a video which talks about how terrible americans are, we put up a video which talks about how terrible they are. we are trying to meet them in the media channels that they are communicating with people. we're also at the beginning of an organization, help to stand up the global counterterrorism forum. if we don't work with partners and understand more effectively how to counter violent extremism, how to stop recruiters, turn families and communities against the jihaddists, there will be a constant flow of them. we have to be smarter about that. there are other things i would like to share with you and others on the committee who are interested. i often, it's not a perfect analogy but i would say that
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our fight against international communism, against the soviet union, during the cold war, we did a lot of things really well. we kept people's hopes alive. we communicated with freedom lovers and advocates behind the iron curtain. we did it through media, through our values. i think we've got a similar challenge even though it's a very different world. let's get smart about it. let's figure out how we're going to put some points on the board, so to speak in dealing with both government and populations. and if i could just, i know that representative duncan is left but his question took me a little by surprise because our op center doesn't do instant messaging. the reason you haven't gotten instant messages is we don't do instant messaging. i want to put that into the record and hope his staff or someone will convey that to him. >> thank you. we go to mr. brooks of alabama. >> thank you, mr. chairman.
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and secretary clinton. it's an honor to be here today and i want to thank you for the time you've spent with us and with the senate for that matter, i'm sure it's been a long day. my experience is truth without credibility is meaningless and credibility once lost is difficult to reacquire. my concern is the degree to which stault statements about benghazi have danieled america's credibility not only here but abroad. i don't focus on your statements in that regard, rather i focus on others. on september 16, 2012, on "meet the press," ambassador susan rice stated, and i quote, what happened in benghazi was initially a ton tain -- spontaneous reaction to what had transpyred in cairo, almost a copy cat of the demonstrations against our facilities in cairo which were prompted by the video, end quote. let me broke the state -- break the statement down into three parts, if i might. i'd like you to confirm whether
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her comments were true or false. secretary clinton, is ambassador rice's statement that benghazi was a spontaneous reaction to the cairo protests factually accurate? >> well, i think if you look at the a.r.b. finding, congressman, there is still question about what caused it, so i don't want to mislead you in any way. that is not the weight of the evidence right now but i think until the f.b.i. completes its investigation we're not going to know all the reasons why these people showed up with weapons and stormed our compound. >> well, secretary clinton is ambassador rice's state thament benghazi was a copy cat of the cairo demonstrations factually accurate? >> it turned out not to be because the cairo demonstrations were not heavily arm and we did eventually get host nation security support. so there are -- there were differences. but again i would say that
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secretary rice conveyed information that had been provided by the intelligence community and the interagency process. >> i'm not going to try to quo into the process. is the statement that benghazi was, quote, prompted by an anti-muslim video, end quote, factually accurate? >> i'd have to go back to my first answer, we don't know all the answers. >> on september 16, the very same day you and ambassador susan rice made her statements to american people in the world, the libyan president said on npr, quote, the idea that this criminal and cowardly act was a spontaneous protest that it just spun out of control, is completely unfounded and preposterous. we fermly believe that this was
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a free pre-calculated, preplanned attack carried out specifically to attack the united states consulate, end quote. as we now know, from everything i have read at least, the libyan president told the truth. contrast that with the statements by ambassador rice to the united nations. it forces one to wonder whether libya's intelligence was that much better than america's on september 16 or whether libyan leaders were that much more willing to be candid or to avoid misstatements. secretary clinton, what evidence was there that was so compeling that it caused the white house through ambassador susan rice to make these representations about spon stains you protests, anti-muslim videos and the like, despite evidence and statements of libya's own president ott con tear. -- contrary? if she's going to make the statements an affirmative act on her part where was the compelling evidence and what was it? >> congressman, i was not
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involved in the so-called talking points process. my understanding is it was a typical process trying to get to the best information available, it was an intelligence product. they are, as i again understand it, working with their committees of jurisdiction to try to unpack that but i will say that all of the senior administration officials, including ambassador rice, who spoke publicly to this terrible incident, had the same information from the intelligence community. >> if i might interject, i appreciate your response so far but if you're not familiar with compelling evidence to support the statements made by ambassador rice, who would know? >> there was evidence, and the evidence was being sifted and analyzed by the intelligence community, which is why the intelligence community was the principal decider about what
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went into talking points. there was also the added problem of nobody wanting to say things that would undermine the information so it's much more complex than i think we're giving it credit for, sir. >> thank you for your candor and your time. >> the ranking member and i discussed going to three minutes for questions for here on out. without objection, that's what we'll do. >> thank you for appearing before the committee today. new member of congress, i speak for the freshmen, we hope in a few years we'll get that chance to serve again. you know, from my perspective it was felt deeply in northern california. the best way to honor their
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memory is to do everything we can to honor and protect our men and women around the world in an increasingly dangerous situation, you've been forth coming with information, we appreciate that. much has been made today about the flow of information but i want to quote the former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, admiral mike mullen, you said after the a.r.b. was issued, as someone who has run large organizations and the secretary of state has been very clear about taking responsibility here, it was from my interpb -- perspective it was not reasonable in terms of having a specific level of knowledge that was very specifically resident in her staff and over time certainly didn't bring that to her attention. that was admiral mike mullen. secretary, how many cables did you say arrived to the state
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department, how long did it take you to read 1.4 million cables? >> i tried to read 1.4 million cables, i don't think i'd be sitting here today, i'd be collapsed somewhere. i appreciate what admiral mullen said because when you do sit on top of large organizations, in his case the united states military which is huge, in my case the state department and usaid, you put into place processes and you have to trust the judgment the good sense of the people in your organization, so those 1.43 million cables they come into the state department, the tradition is they're all addressed to me but the vast, vast majority are funneled through these processes to get to the right people who are expected to take the right action. and 99.9% of the time people do. i want to reiterate that.
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it's an incredible organization , particularly security professionals, who have stopped so many attack bus occasionally we see a serious problem like we have seen here. that's what we're trying to fix. >> thank you for your candor. >> mr. tom cotton of arkansas. >> good afternoon, madam speaker, thank you -- madam secretary, thank you for being here. i bring greetings from many of our mutual friends in arkansas. some of our peers on the other side have expressed their ideas for your future, i just wish you'd won the democratic primary in 2008. you said on september 21 that we will not rest until we have tracked down and brought to justice the terrorists who murdered the four americans at benghazi. >> yes, sir. >> earlier you said i hope the
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f.b.i. is able to investigate. >> congressman, first congratulations, good to see you here. it does not, i am conscious of the fact that talking about f.b.i. investigations is something you have to be extremely careful about for obvious reasons. i hope it's clear that it's going to take some type. the f.b.i. is conducting an investigation. what actions are taken will be derled in the future. >> what is the united states government's position on the real of al qaeda in islamic magrid in the attack on benghazi? >> i'm not going to prejudge what the f.b.i. determines. we know there are al qaeda-related organizations as we saw from the pictures that were held up throughout the region including in eastern lib yasm we know that people like we saw with the recent attacks
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in algeria like to associate themselves with al qaeda but we've got to be careful about what that means. core al qaeda has been severely depleted coming out of afghanistan and pakistan. what we're dealing with now is the jihaddists who have been associated with al qaeda who have gained, unfortunately, very serious combat experience, coming back to the countries, in order to go wage jihad in central asia. these groups are all part of the same global jihaddist movement. the goals are unfortunately the similar and pose similar threats to us and our partners. >> the chairman and mr. poe referenced a due netion suspect who was -- a due thesian suspect who was released -- a
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tunisian suspect who was released. do you find it troubling that he was released? >> i had a long conversation with high-ranking officials about this, as did director mueller of the f.b.i. when he was there. we have been assured there was an effort to have rule of law, judicial process, sufficient evidence not yet available to be presented but a very clear commitment made to us that they will be monitoring the whereabouts of karzai and we're going to hold them to that and watch carefully. >> thank you, madam speaker. >> mr. lowenthal of california. >> thank you, madam secretary. i want to compliment you on your exemplary service but more than that i want to say how much i've appreciated your openness, your thoughtfulness today, your transparency. what i'm struck with in this
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hearing is a greater appreciation of the courage of state department personnel. i think we are left with that understanding of just how courageous personnel have been in taking on assignments that in the past never had been taken on before. and you've -- you have abeably presented to us why that's important. why it's important -- ably presented to us why that's important. my question is very similar to the one of congressman schneider's. that was how do you make that analysis between risk and presence. what are some of the obstacles in making that. how do we move forward with that and how does the congress understand some of those -- that kind of balance? >> well, this is my ongoing hope that we can get it more right than wrong.
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let me just make a few points because it's an issue that i hope this committee takes very seriously. first of all, you've got to remember that when we talk about the state department and dip lo hatic facilities, that covers, we are the umbrella for so many other agencies in our government. if we were not there, many of those agencies representatives -- agencies' representatives would have a difficult time being there. we are the diplomatic presence that permits us to pursue law enforcement objectives, intelligence objectives, military objectives, and so much more. so it's not just about us sitting around and say, you know, do we really want our diplomats at risk? it's ok, what are the equities of the rest of the government that would be effective if we decided we had to close shop because the risk was too great? i want to stress that because i don't think you can understand,
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at least from my perspective, how difficult the calculation is without knowing that it's not just about the state department and usaid. secondly, i don't think we can retreat from these hard places. we have to harden our security presence but we can't retreat. we've got to be there. we've got to be picking up the -- picking up intelligence information, building relationships and if we had a whole table of some of our most experienced ambassadors sitting here today, they would be speaking with a loud chorus, you know, yes, help us be secure but don't shut us down, don't keep us behind high walls in bunkers so we can't get out and figure out what's going on. that's the balance i've been trying to make for four years. >> we only have time for two more questions. we'll end at 5:00. we go to mr. cook from california. >> thank you, madam secretary. first of all, i want to
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complipt you, it's been a -- to compliment you. it's been a long, long day, to survive all these questions, it's been tough. i want to talk to you about marine security guards. and this is from somebody who spent a long time in the marine corps. not under the cognizance of the d.o.d. or state department. you had smings -- things about additional marine security guards -- guard detachments and the question is about whether it's prudent to task -- to organize those assets that are organic to you and perhaps put them in those areas that have the high threat level? if you could answer that, i'd appreciate that. >> congressman, it's a very astute observation. i mean, we believe that we need
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to increase both our marine security guard detachments as well as our diplomatic security and create more synergy and cooperation in these high threat posts. the marine security guards, as you know, are very, very much a presence on more than 150 of our posts. and in order to give them the facilities an support they need they need a marine house. they need to be very close to the embassy. because as -- if you saw the recent movie "argo," you saw the marines destroying classified material when the mob was outside in tehran. they are experts at that. they are people that are totally relied on by the entire mission. but as i said earlier, historically their job has not
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been personal security. so we've got to figure out, working with d.o.d., particularly with the marines, you know, and most of them are very young you know, i take pictures with them everywhere i go. usually the sergeant is older, more experienced, but most of the marines on duty are quite young. we've got to figure out how we really take advantage of their presence and that's a conversation we're in the midst of with our d.o.d. colleagues. with your experience, i would welcome any insight or ideas you've got about how we really do use marine security detachments better. >> thank you very much. i yield back my time. >> thank you. grace ling from new york. >> congratulations, grace. >> madam secretary, wonderful to see you again.
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if you have fellow -- advites for a fellow new yorker finding her way in this town, let me know. as a woman and a mom thank you for being a role model for women not only in the quites but also throughout the world. thank you for your compassion and leadership, always. i'm curious. in the past week we've seen the french respond decisively to the situation in mali. the african union has fought well in somalia. do you see this as an advancement of multilateralism in combating islamic extremism in the mideast, in africa, and what more can we ask for allies in that area? >> congratulations grace. that's an excellent question. i think that's exactly what we're coping with right now. i'm very proud of the work we did on -- with african nations to stand up, financially support and train the force that has driven them out

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